WASHINGTON, March 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Press Club (NPC) announced today that this year's national Night Out For Austin Tice, originally set for April 29, will now take place on July 14, 2020, in an effort to stem the tide of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"After talking with the Tice family and our friends in the restaurant industry, we believe postponing Night Out is in everyone's best interests," said NPC Executive Director Bill McCarren.
"We know the restaurant industry is hurting right now, and we want to assure our restaurant partners that despite the date change, we will not let up in our promotional efforts, and will do everything we can to support their businesses and shine a light on the important role they play in our communities," said McCarren. "We are eager to help restart the restaurant industry as soon as it is safe to do so, and are as committed as ever to raising awareness for Austin and encouraging press freedom advocates to dine out when restaurants reopen their doors."
Austin Tice, an award-winning journalist, was working for McClatchy and The Washington Post when he was detained in Syria in 2012. Austin is a Georgetown University graduate, a native Houstonian, and a United States Marine who served three tours of duty. Today, he is currently the only U.S. journalist being held overseas, and after more than seven years, has endured the longest detention of any U.S. journalist to date.
The inaugural Night Out for Austin Tice held on May 2, 2019, drew support from 80 restaurants in 13 states and the District of Columbia. Thousands of people who went out to eat that night learned about Austin's case, and millions more read about him in newspaper ads, articles and op-eds, and listened to the Tices tell their story in dozens of radio and television interviews. In addition to raising awareness, last year's Night Out raised more than $60,000 to supplement the FBI's $1M reward fund for information leading to Austin's safe return and generated new leads to the FBI.
Restaurants can register to become an official restaurant partner of this year's Night Out at NightOutForAustin.com. Participating restaurants can choose to either make a one-time donation upfront or pledge a percentage of their revenue from their July 14 dinner service. All proceeds raised will go to the National Press Club's non-profit affiliate, The National Press Club Journalism Institute (a 501-c3), where it will be held for further instruction from the FBI. Restaurants who want to participate but cannot make a financial contribution are also welcome; please contact [email protected] for more information. It is our hope that July 14 will turn into a national welcome home celebration for Austin Tice, and that funds raised will be used to rehabilitate Austin back into society after more than seven years in captivity.
Press Contact: Lindsay Underwood for the National Press Club; [email protected], (202) 662-7561
SOURCE National Press Club