Good Deeds

Wait Until You Hear How A Bar Owner Gave Back To Her Staff

Her employees aren't working right now, so she came up with an idea to get them some cash that was literally off the wall.

A surfboard with a faux-shark bite on one end and a message that reads "Welcome to the Sand Bar" on it hangs over the wood bar top in a small pub in Tybee Island, GA.

The bar is now closed due to restrictions to help stop the spread of the coronavirus, but Jennifer Knox, the bar's owner, is hopeful that the seats will be filled again soon. In the meantime, she came up with a creative way to help her employees.

Jennifer Knox has owned The Sand Bar in Tybee Island, GA for six years. The Sand Bar/Facebook

One of the charming features of the beachside bar is the rows of dollar bills that are pinned to almost every inch of wall space.

The tradition stretches back to the days of the Gold Rush, when miners would write their names on their cash and stick it to the bar's ceiling so they could come back and fetch their "get home" money if they didn't find any gold.

The walls and ceilings of The Sand Bar are covered in dollar bills. The Sand Bar/Facebook

While the customers at The Sand Bar aren't mining for gold, the bills give them a way to leave their mark on the place. The money often has names and dates scribbled on it (or an occasional dirty joke).

Knox, who was a bartender at The Sand Bar for seven years before owning it herself, thought of another use for the cash – giving it to her unemployed staff.

Knox decided to donate the bills pinned to her bar's walls and ceilings to her furloughed staff. The Sand Bar/Facebook

"We were sitting there doors locked and I'm like oh my gosh, 'there's money on the walls and we have time on our hands," Knox told CNN. "'We gotta get this money down.'"

Over the next few days, Knox and a crew of five volunteers got to work carefully removing the bills from the walls and ceiling of the bar – a task that proved much more difficult than originally thought. Some of the bills had dozens of staples in them, and most of the money had to be thoroughly cleaned once it was taken down.

Knox recruited 5 volunteers to help her remove all of the bills. The Sand Bar/Facebook

After another week or so, all of the cash had been removed, sanitized and counted. In total, Knox and the volunteers collected $3,714.

Once word about what Knox was doing got out, some of her regulars wanted to pitch in, bringing the grand total to $4,104. She was able to give her staff of four bartenders and two musicians a little over $600 each.

In an effort to keep the spirit of giving going, Knox is still accepting donations to distribute to service industry workers on the island.

"We all look out for each other," she said. "We are all in this together."

While Knox doesn't think she'll bring back the trend of tacking dollar bills to the walls, she's brainstorming other ideas for customers to leave their mark on the place. We're guessing it won't require any staples!

Knox painted the walls bright colors after taking down all of the bills. The Sand Bar/Facebook

How can you start something good?

You can send Knox a Venmo donation to help support the workers in Tybee Island service industry.

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