Kirvin Doak Communications


Nonprofits benefiting the families of food and beverage service employees will be this year’s

focus at one of the industry’s biggest events in the country


Las Vegas – The 2021 Nightclub & Bar Show announces CORE and Southern Smoke, non-profits benefiting families of food and beverage service employees, as the official charities for this year’s convention, happening June 28-30, 2021.

A long-time charity partner with the Nightclub & Bar Show, and sister-show VIBE Conference, Children of Restaurant Employees (CORE) is a national nonprofit dedicated to serving food and beverage employees with children to provide financial relief when either the parent or their child faces a health crisis, injury, death, or natural disaster.

“Food and beverage service employees who face a qualifying life crisis can turn to CORE: Children of Restaurant Employees,” said Sheila Bennett, executive director of CORE. “We’re grateful to Questex’s Nightclub & Bar Show whose contributions to our grants program will provide financial support to qualified employees when they need us.”

For the first time, Nightclub & Bar Show is also partnering with Southern Smoke. The non-profit also helps food and beverage service employees and has successfully provided relief funds throughout all 50 states toward those battling health crisis, natural disasters, mental health, the COVID-19 pandemic and more.

“We’re so grateful that Southern Smoke is a beneficiary of the Nightclub & Bar Show this year,” said Chris Shepherd, co-founder of the Southern Smoke Foundation. “Bar and restaurant employees were devastated by the pandemic, and this partnership with Nightclub & Bar Show will do so much to provide relief—and awareness about the Emergency Relief Fund—for these folks. Southern Smoke provides relief year-round for food and beverage workers in crisis, and we’re so glad to partner with them at this upcoming event.”

The Nightclub & Bar Show will donate $12,500 to both CORE and Southern Smoke in efforts to support the backbone of the food and beverage community. Both charities will have an interactive booth on the Nightclub & Bar Show expo floor and will be speaking during the conference program on their work, their missions and opening up channels of communication for industry workers in need of their services.

To learn more about registration or other programs and activations at the 2021 Nightclub & Bar Show June 28 – 30, 2021, visit Nightclub & Bar Show is a trade event and not open to the general public.



About Nightclub & Bar Show

Nightclub & Bar Show is the go-to resource for the bar and restaurant industry. Mirroring the fast-paced, trend-setting nature of the hospitality industry, Nightclub & Bar has been providing the specific tools that bar and restaurant owners, operators and managers need to grow their businesses, compete, and succeed in this hyper-competitive and dynamic industry. Nightclub & Bar Show is part of the Bar & Restaurant Group, a division of the Questex Hospitality Group which also produces VIBE Conference, and daily content on

About Questex

Questex brings people together in the markets that help people live better: travel, hospitality and wellness; the industries that help people live longer: life science and healthcare; and the technologies that enable and fuel these new experiences. We live in the experience economy – connecting our ecosystem through live events, surrounded by data insights and digital communities. We deliver experience and real results. It happens here.

About CORE

CORE: Children of Restaurant Employees, a national 501(c)3 founded by industry veterans, is

dedicated to serving food and beverage service employees with children when either the

working parent or child is navigating through a medical diagnosis, illness, injury, a death, or

impacted by a natural disaster. Industry organizations and individual donors provide financial

funding to help these families when they are faced with a medical crisis, injury, death or natural

disaster. Since 2004, the organization has grown into a nationally recognized non-profit that has

helped more than 1,300 families in 50 US states. For grant qualifications, to apply or to refer a

family for grant consideration please visit To support food and beverage

employees via a donation please visit and click on the donation button.

About Southern Smoke

Chris Shepherd launched Southern Smoke in 2015 after learning his friend and former sommelier Antonio Gianola was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Since then, Southern Smoke has donated $763,000 to the MS Society, making it the largest third-party fundraiser in a five-state area.

In 2017, Southern Smoke shifted its focus to provide assistance to people in the food and beverage industry affected by Hurricane Harvey and distributed $501,000 to 139 people in need. Recognizing a need, the Southern Smoke Foundation created an Emergency Relief Fund for people in the food and beverage industry in crisis.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, the Southern Smoke Emergency Relief Fund has distributed $6,264,274 to 2,727 people nationwide—both directly to people in need via the Emergency Relief Fund and to organizations that represent the needs of people in our industry. As Chris says, Southern Smoke was created to “take care of our own.” To donate or to apply, visit



Terri Maruca / Katie Nance

Kirvin Doak Communications