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Santa’s Pub Crawl, a event to benefit Project 16:49, is underway at several taverns throughout Rock County. All proceeds will benefit the nonprofit group, which serves unaccompanied homeless teens in Rock County.

As part of the socially-distant event, participants can buy a passport for $10 and have it stamped at 13 participating bars until Sunday, Dec. 20. After passports are stamped, participants can turn them in for entry into a prize drawing.

Participants don’t have to visit every bar, but each stamp counts as one entry, and individuals can be entered up to 13 times.“We are so blessed to have local pubs and community members that are supporting us and local small businesses this year through our annual pub crawl,” said Rita Key, communication and development assistant for Project 16:49.

Passports must be turned in by Tuesday, Dec. 22. Participants can leave them at participating bars or send a message to Project 16:49 via Facebook.During the event, taverns will be offering specialty drinks, donating $1 from the sale of each to Project 16:49.

“And people can vote for their favorite drink. It’s an incentive for the pubs to create something to win a prize for the best drink,” Key said.

The pub crawl includes these bars:

Janesville: Legends, 11 N. Main St.; The Looking Glass, 18 N. Main St.; Bogey’s, 1700 N. Washington St.; Willowdale Tavern, 5905 W. Highway 11; drafthouse, 101 E. Milwaukee St.; Whiskey Ranch Bar & Grill, 24 N. Main St.; O’Riley & Conway’s Irish Pub, 214 W. Milwaukee St.; Bucky’s Lucky Bell, 1802 Center Ave.; Sidelines, 731 S. Wuthering Hills Drive; Wiggy’s, 9 N. Parker Drive.

Orfordville: Knute’s Bar & Grill, 206 E. Beloit St.

Milton: Northleaf Winery, 232 S. Janesville St.

Beloit: Thirsty Badger, 2683 Prairie Ave.

Along with the prize drawing, the crawl will feature a cash raffle. Tickets can be bought at any of the participating taverns for $5 each.

The drawing will be held live at 6 p.m. Dec. 22, on the Project 16:49 Facebook page. First and second prizes will be 40% and 10%, respectively, of raffle money raised, and third prize will be a $100 gift card to Woodman’s.Last year Santa’s Pub Crawl raised about $9,000.

“Each year we strive to raise at least $10,000. We were a little short last year, and we are hoping to increase that this year,” Key said.

Project 16:49 operates Robin’s House for young women and The Transitional Living Program (TLP) house for young men ages 17-21. The organization also offers case management and advocacy services for all age homeless and unaccompanied youth.

Project 16:49 also gives kids identified as homeless or unaccompanied hygiene products, school supplies, socks, blankets, single serving meals and more.

One of the true challenges of helping unaccompanied youth when schools are not open for in-person learning involves reaching out and finding them. Many are also struggling with not only a place to stay at night but during the day.

“Many of them are not in places where they can attend online school, and teachers and counselors are not seeing kids face-to-face. It’s much more difficult for them to hone in on the ones who really need the help,” Key said.

Check or cash donations can be sent to Project 16:39, 2911 Carrousel Lane, Janesville WI 53545.

For more information, visit project1649.org.

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