Bars & Pubs

Here’s Why A Bunch Of Sydney Bars Will Stop Serving Drinks Tonight

By Sammy Preston
21st Mar 2019

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The fight for Sydney’s urban culture is set to come to a head at the state election this weekend, with some parties promising to protect, reinvigorate and restore the city’s night time economy in the wake of lockout laws, festival shutdowns and the present government’s anti-nightlife policy.

To show their frustration, support and hope for better times ahead—a bunch of our favourite bars and pubs will put Friday night drinks on hold (for 5 minutes) to remind us all to vote in favour of culture at the polls on Saturday.

Organised by the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA), at 6pm bartenders and venue openers will cease drinks service, turn up the lights, stand on the bar, grab a mic and address their patrons.

It’ll be a call out to voters to put Sydney first, to stand up for their city, and think about a more innovative, creative future for Sydney.

Don't worry too much about the success of your Friday night out though—that's not the aim of the standstill. Drinks will be flowing once again after 5 minutes. 

Participating bars include:

  • Bistecca
  • Botany View Hotel
  • Bulletin Place
  • Button Bar
  • Cricketer’s Arms Hotel, Balmain
  • Crooked Tailor
  • Dead Ringer
  • Duke of Clarence
  • Earls Juke Joint
  • Grandmas
  • Jacoby’s
  • Lord Gladstone
  • Mr Pocket
  • Odd Culture
  • Old Mates’ Place
  • Oxford Art Factory
  • Papa Gedes
  • Pocket Bar
  • Pocket Terrigal
  • Potts Point Hotel
  • PS 40
  • Ramblin’ Rascal
  • Rosie Campbell’s
  • Stitch
  • Sydney Park Hotel
  • The Barber-Shop
  • The Royal Albert Surry Hills
  • The Taphouse
  • This Must Be The Place
  • Venue 505
  • Welcome Hotel Rozelle
  • Whirly Bird
  • White Cockatoo Petersham
  • Wild Rover
  • The Lansdowne
  • The Unicorn
  • Mary’s
  • Soda Factory
  • El Santos

Co-founder of Mary's and all-around legend Jake Smyth said, “While we ain’t gonna tell you who to vote for, we are going to tell you what to vote for. Vote for community. Vote for culture. Vote for music and art. Vote for your neighbours and vote for your kids." 

Get to know your party preferences with NTIA's election scorecard

Editor's note: An earlier version of this article referenced over 100 venues participating in the standstill. NTIA has since corrected this number to just 39 venues, and specified that service will cease for just 5 minutes. 


What: Unhappy Hour
When: Friday 22 March, 6pm for 5 minutes only
Where: Various bars and pubs throughout Sydney

Here's why it's time to stand up for Sydney

Image credit: James Adams. 

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