Calgary cocktail bar loses $3K worth of holiday glassware, decides to donate to charity

The owner of Proof Cocktail Bar in Calgary said $3,000 worth of holiday-themed cups were stolen this year. However he’s decided to turn it into a positive by donating the difference next year to a social services organization in the city.

Jeff Jamieson, the proprietor of Proof Cocktail Bar, said after running through the numbers Thursday night, he realized a lot of patrons had seemingly snuck their cocktail glasses out the door.

“Well I mean obviously we recognize that it’s going to happen … but this year we were noticing as the month went on that it was pretty extreme,” he said.

The business owner said the cups were unique in design and something you wouldn’t see at the store, so he tried to mitigate the theft by selling them for $20 and under.

“The thing is the cups are gorgeous, right,” he said.

“I think people get excited about Christmas … so you know alcohol also lowers your inhibitions. People want to take home a part of the event which you know that’s kind of nice for us.”

Jamieson said upon discovering the large number of cups stolen, he decided to spin the misfortune by tweeting out his plans to donate the difference next year to the Calgary Urban Project Society (CUPS), which assists Calgarians living in poverty.

“We just wanted to try and find a way to maybe have fun with it and involve CUPS next year and also lower the amount of glasses going out of the building. I just said I’ll take that $3,000 and whatever it’s reduced by next year I will donate the cups,” he said.

Jamieson said he plans to continue to sell the themed cups next winter — with the proceeds also being sent to the charity.

“I’ll just tell people not to steal my cups because they’re stealing from CUPS,” he said.

“We just want to turn this from taking to giving.”

Twitter reacts

After Jamieson posted the tweet, he got quite a few reactions.

Twitter user Emma May wrote “as if small biz isn’t facing enough hurdles these days. So sorry guys.”

Another user, Alyssa Berry, also responded to the cocktail bar’s call out to say she’s happy to support a fundraiser to allow the lounge to replace the stolen items.

“What is wrong with people? Stealing from a business WHILE DRINKING THERE? Audacity, entitlement and pure greed are everywhere in this city. I’m so sorry, Proof. Some people completely suck…” she tweeted.

Others said they loved the company’s idea to donate to CUPS Calgary, with one tweeting out a picture of his decision to contribute $100 toward the social services organization.

Jamieson see’s that people are genuinely upset on Twitter, but said their intention isn’t to shame anyone.

“I don’t want anybody to think that like we’re out there feeling sorry for ourselves because we’re certainly not,” he said.

“I just honestly wanted to turn kind of a negative into a positive.”

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