Celebrating Father’s Day: 7 Best Practices for Your Independent Restaurant

Jun 5, 2024

Parenting is one of the hardest and most rewarding jobs there is, and if you know a great dad, you know they’re worth celebrating. This year, Father’s Day falls on Sunday, June 16th. That date is coming up fast, so the Morton Food Service team has put together some best practices to help support the success of your independent restaurant.

Whether your customers are gathering to celebrate an amazing father, grandpa, stepdad, foster parent or several important family members, Father’s Day is a great opportunity for restaurants to attract both small and larger groups while helping to create memorable family experiences. Here are seven best practices for independent restaurants to make Father’s Day special—for personalized guidance, please contact us or reach out to your local Morton rep.

1. Create a Special Father’s Day Menu

We made this just for you, Dad! Offering a dedicated Father’s Day menu with dad-approved dishes can draw in families. Think hearty steaks, BBQ ribs, gourmet burgers, and craft beers. Include specials like a “Dad’s Favourite” combo, featuring a great steak or burger, a delicious side dish and a beer. Don’t forget kid-friendly favourites, too—you want to keep the whole family happy at the table.

2. Host a Family-Friendly Event

What’s Father’s Day without the kids? Organize activities that engage the whole family, such as live music or other entertainment, crafts at the table, or tabletop games to keep everyone busy and entertained while waiting for their meals. If you’ve got television screens, consider showing a family-friendly show or film. A welcoming atmosphere encourages extended stays and positive experiences.

3. Interactive Cooking or Grilling Stations

If you’ve got space for it, set up interactive cooking or grilling stations where dads can participate in preparing their meals with the help of chefs. This not only makes the meal more enjoyable but also creates a memorable hands-on experience. If you’ve got a great patio, consider an outdoor cooking station or even a demonstration with tips from the pros. After all, what dad doesn’t like to hang out next to a grill with a bunch of other dads?

4. Serve Father’s Day Brunch

Brunch is increasingly popular among families making holiday plans, and a delicious Father’s Day brunch can attract large groups as well as smaller tables. Create a special brunch menu with a variety of mouth-water options, or consider a buffet with variety—classic breakfast dishes, sandwiches and salads, pasta and a few gourmet selections. Include special items like a “Dad’s Omelette Station” where they can customize their omelettes. Have multiple seatings if possible and be sure to have a great drinks menu with coffee, tea, beer and non-alcoholic beverage options.

5. Offers Promotions and Discounts

Dads love a good deal! Over the Father’s Day weekend, consider offering one-time promotions such as “Dads Eat Free” or “Special Discount for Dads” to attract more families. Bundle deals like “Family Feast for Four” can also be appealing. Ensure these promotions are clearly advertised on your website and social media channels, and be clear about any terms and conditions related to your offer.

6. Targeting Moms in Marketing

It may be Dad’s special day, but Mom’s probably in charge. Recognize that moms often plan family outings, and tailor your marketing messages to them. This may involve emphasizing a unique experience you’re offering for Father’s Day, promoting a special menu or highlighting any additional features (kid-friendly activities, on-site gift options, etc). Highlight family-friendly aspects and the element of stress-free planning. Use social media platforms and email newsletters to reach this audience effectively, and have your staff help spread the word.

7. Capture the Moment

A family photo is a great way to capture a special family moment, and it offers families a keepsake they can take home and keep for years to come. Set up a photo booth or have a professional photographer to capture family moments. Offer printed photos or digital versions that families can display in their home and/or share on social media. This not only enhances the experience but also serves as organic marketing for your restaurant. Include a suggested hashtag that links back to your restaurant for added impact!

Additional Tips for a Successful Father’s Day:

  • Reservations: Encourage early reservations to manage crowd flow and ensure a smooth dining experience.
  • Ambiance: Create a celebratory yet relaxed atmosphere with decorations like balloons, banners, or table centerpieces that celebrate Father’s Day.
  • Feedback: Collect feedback from guests to improve future Father’s Day events and address any concerns promptly.

Happy Father’s Day from Morton Food Service!

By focusing on these best practices, independent restaurants can create memorable and enjoyable Father’s Day experiences that cater to dads and delight the entire family. Thoughtful planning, engaging activities, and targeted marketing will ensure that your restaurant becomes the go-to destination for Father’s Day celebrations. If you’d like to discuss any of these suggestions in greater detail, please contact us. The Morton team would be glad to offer personalized support and help your independent restaurant have a happy, successful Father’s Day weekend.