17 November 2017

Movember at King O'Malley's - 'Men & Books' presented by Graeme Simsion

| Suzanne Kiraly
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Peter Barclay

Peter Barclay: the driving force behind everyone’s favourite pub; King O’Malley’s

It is no wonder that Peter Barclay, managing director of King O’Malley’s Pub in Civic, was the recipient of an Order of Australia medal in 2007. I have been following Peter’s activities for many years now, and he is an extraordinary entrepreneur – one who contributes to so many community projects and supports so many worthwhile causes that it’s hard to keep up!

A passionate supporter of Canberra and the hospitality and tourism industry for over 20 years, Peter has been the Managing Director of the multi-award-winning King O’Malley’s Irish Pub since its opening in 2000. Peter enjoys helping the community through organisations such as the Rotary, the Leukaemia Foundation, and Movember.

If that’s not community involvement, I don’t know what is!

And now, as we have entered the month of ‘Movember’, we find Peter rising to the occasion to support this worthy cause as well, in a brand new event called “Men & Books”.

According to the Movember Facebook page: “The Movember Foundation is the only charity tackling men’s health on a global scale, year around.”

In addition to raising funds, it’s also about shaving off your beard and growing a ‘mo’ in November.

King O’Malleys has supported Movember for the last ten years and to date, have helped in raising over $10,000 for the cause. This year, five members of the King O’Malleys team have volunteered and parted with their beloved beards to grow a ‘mo’ (keeping in mind that in the first month, it’s in an ugly and itchy stage).

Sporting a ‘mo’ for Movember: the O’Malley’s team is taking up the Movember challenge to raise funds for men’s health.

When I interviewed Peter on how he first came to be involved in Movember, he told me that he had lost a friend to suicide twelve years ago and it had really hit him hard.

“He was the last person I thought would ever take his own life and he left a wife and his children behind. It was heartbreaking.” Peter added, “Then my Dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer and there have also been many, many men in particular, who come to the pub for emotional support. We all need emotional support at times, and men find it hard to open up.”

Being innovative and always looking for ways to raise money for this cause, Peter found the perfect match when Graeme Simsion, internationally renowned Aussie author, screenwriter, playwright, and data modeller, approached him with a generous offer. This month, Graeme has decided to generously donate all of his book royalties to the Movember men’s health campaign.

'The Rosie Project': one of Graeme Simsion's bestseller's, available at 'Men & Books'

‘The Rosie Project’: one of Graeme Simsion’s bestseller’s, available at ‘Men & Books’.

Graeme Simsion found King O’Malley’s to be the perfect establishment to set up their fundraising event in support of Movember: “Men & Books”, which will be held on Monday 20th November 2017.

Tell all the men you know that they are invited to come along, have a beer (or an entire beer paddle!) and buy a book or two.

There are four books that will be available for purchase on the night:

The Rosie Project – Comedy, safe choice. 3.5 million copies sold in about 40 languages. Australian Book Industry Book of the Year, 2014. The plot follows a socially awkward male hero seeking the perfect woman. Men who have recommended this book include Bill Gates, Nicholas Kristof, Alan Carr and Tim Ferguson.

The Rosie Effect – The sequel, comedy. Same socially awkward man tries to hold his marriage together as he faces fatherhood. Similarly well-reviewed, but read the first one first.

The Best of Adam Sharp – Simsion’s personal favourite and one that men (overall) have responded better to than women, though Toni Collette liked it enough to option it for a movie. Most common criticism: too much sex, drinking and (mainly 60s and 70s) music. If that doesn’t sound like a negative, this one’s for you.

Two Steps Forward – Just out, ‘Two Steps Forward’ is a collaboration with Simsion’s wife, Anne Buist. An engineer (male, divorced, cynical) and a recent widow (spiritual, vegetarian, impulsive), independently set out to walk the Camino de Santiago. If you’ve ever contemplated the Camino, or are up for personal renewal, no further thought needed.

If you don’t fancy yourself a reader because you haven’t met the right book yet, then why not try your luck here? You might be pleasantly surprised. And if you’re not the physical-book-type, don’t worry – these books are available in eBook format too.

Might I also remind you that Christmas is around the corner? What a perfect gift for anyone who is, or has ever been in a relationship! They will love you for it.

So get along and do your bit for men’s health at King O’Malley’s, November 20th at 6 pm. You’ll have a great time being treated to beer paddles and a tasting platter while contributing to a worthy cause.

No bookings necessary. Just turn up!

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