The Original OKRA Charity Saloon in downtown Houston operates a lot like any other tavern — booze is purchased and poured, bartenders get paid and take home tips. But, the owners of this establishment give all their profits away.
Proceeds from OKRA’s are donated to a different Houston-based organization or social cause each month. With every drink purchased, bar patrons vote on which charity is chosen from among four new nominees each month.
The New York Times recently took a look at a new generation of pubs, like Okras, that are springing up –the Oregon Public House in Portland, the Cause in Washington, DC, and SheBeen in Melbourne, Australia — all dedicating their profits to charity.
But this non-profit nightspot is unique. The bar, which is open every day from 4pm to 2am, is operated by a collaborative group of independent business owners who are already running some of Houston’s most successful bars, coffee shops, and restaurants.
For Brad Moore of Grand Prize Bar and Big Star Bar, it is this characteristic that is most rewarding: “This project not only shows our commitment to giving back to our city, but it also showcases how cohesive OKRA is – we’ve found a way to be creative and have fun, all while helping worthy, local charities”.
OKRA’s Charity Saloon is located at 924 Congress Street in a brick building that dates back to the 1880s.
(WATCH the AP video below)