The Public House in Davenport raised $14,640.55 that will be donated to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital’s Mollie Tibbetts Foundation. Owners Austin and Johnna Chesney have been raising money since August — their eighth year doing so.

The Iowa Hawkeye-themed bar sells everything from t-shirts, VIP gameday experiences and foam balls. But the support for the team goes deeper than the fanfare.

“This bar is such a mecca for Hawkeye football and basketball, we wanted to create a bigger meaning for what we’re all about here,” owner Johnna Chesney told me. “We not only are cheering on our beloved Hawkeyes but we also want to raise money for a great cause.”

In 2019, Public House began allocating the funds directly to the Mollie Tibbetts Foundation, created by Mollie’s mother, Laura Calderwood, after the death of Tibbetts in 2018.

“It’s near and dear to my husband and I’s heart — there’s a need help for child’s psychology,” Chesney said. “Mollie Tibbetts — she was a runner and was an advocate for child psychology. My husband’s an avid runner, and it made sense for us to allocate those funds to the Mollie Tibbetts fund. There’s kids fighting a bigger battle, and we want to help.”

The check was presented to the hospital today at the Public House. Taylor Reyhons works at the hospital and helps raise money, and she arrived in Davenport to collect the check. She shared how impactful the donation truly is.

“This is amazing to keep Mollie’s memory alive and this is a very underrepresented area of our hospital — mental health and children,” Reyhons shared. “We don’t have much support in that area, so knowing that the Public House is committed to keeping Mollie’s memory alive and supported our most vulnerable patients is key here. We can’t thank them enough.”

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