The Waiters' Race is a century old French tradition that tests the skills a waiter uses every day to provide quality service in a timely manner. The first Waiters' Race, organized to celebrate the excellence and dedication of the waiter’s profession, started in Paris and takes place in over 52 countries today. The concept of the race is very simple: waiters have to race as fast as possible holding a loaded tray without spilling its contents. The fastest and most nimble waiter wins!


This year, Atlanta will have its second annual  Waiters' Race hosted by Le Bilboquet and The Shops Buckhead Atlanta, produced by The Industry Fund, a non-profit supporting the restaurant industry. All proceeds will benefit the Giving Kitchen, a non-profit organization that provides emergency assistance to restaurant workers in crisis through financial assistance and a network of community resources.  The race will be held on July 15th from 3:00-7:00PM at the center plaza at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta.

Waiters' from all over the metro Atlanta area will compete for a round-trip ticket to Paris and a traveling trophy to be housed in their restaurant for the next 12 months. Participants will be judged on speed, service and style. Participants will walk or run with a server's tray in one hand that will include restaurant themed items.

The Waiters’ Race will be held on Sunday, July 14, 2019, at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta. For the third year, the Waiters’ Race will be hosted by Le Bilboquet and produced by The Industry Fund, a nonprofit organization supporting the restaurant industry.

All proceeds benefit The Giving Kitchen, a nonprofit organization that provides emergency assistance grants for Atlanta area restaurant workers facing an unanticipated hardship.

Waiters from across metro Atlanta area will compete for roundtrip tickets to Paris and a traveling trophy to be housed in their restaurant for the next 12 months.

Handpicked celebrity chefs from the Atlanta community will round out the Waiters’ Race judges to take part in this unique industry event.

Participants will be judged on speed, service and style. Waiters will walk with a server’s tray in one hand that will include a glass of water, a glass of wine and a split of champagne.


The Giving Kitchen provides emergency assistance to food service workers through financial support and a network of community resources.

The Giving Kitchen (GK) is a nonprofit organization that was inspired by an outpouring of support from the hospitality industry when Chef Ryan Hidinger was diagnosed with late-stage cancer in December 2012.

The Giving Kitchen’s promise to the food service community in Georgia is stability. They fulfill that promise through financial assistance, by creating a hub of community resources and using our influence to help create a restaurant community where self- care is valued above all else.




Dana Barrett is a Business Commentator, Social Critic, TV & Radio Host, Actress and owner of DB Media, LLC. The Dana Barrett Show, which airs weekdays at 9AM EST on biz1190AM in Atlanta, is the only live, local radio show focused on what's happening in Atlanta. From startups to big business and everything in between, The Dana Barrett Show keeps you up to date on the headlines and introduces you to the entrepreneurs, executives and thought leaders that make this city great. With expert contributors on a wide range of business topics and segments that include technology, real estate, hospitality, retail, and more, Dana and her team cover all the business that affects your daily life with a fun, upbeat tone and a little bit of sass.


Lynn Smith was named host
of HLN’s new
daily show “On the Story”and
is based in the CNN Worldwide headquarters in Atlanta. She joined HLN in fall 2013 as an anchor/ correspondent and had been filling in as host of the high-rated Weekend Express since December of that year. The year prior, Smith had been a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor at WNBC’s local station News 4 New York. Earlier, at NBC- owned station WCAU, Philadelphia, she served as general assignment reporter since June 2007. In January 2008, her role was expanded and she was promoted to co-anchor of “NBC 10 Weekend Today” on Saturday and Sunday mornings.


Nyssa Green

Nyssa Green is a trusted beauty and lifestyle expert, educator and Emmy award winning makeup artist. With over 20 years of experience, she has built a diverse portfolio of clients that trust her to create the looks they need for TV, print, appearances and more. Nyssa's work has been seen on almost every major TV network. She's worked with celebrities in every genre, including: Alicia Keys, Vickie Winans, Bono, Jane Fonda, 3 US Presidents, Jermaine Dupri, countless brides, and many more. Her work is seen daily on 11Alive where she is the key artist and contributor for Atlanta & Co. Through her agency, The Green Room Agency, she trains and manages other artists who are equally successful. Nyssa has been named Best Of Atlanta (makeup) 4 times and just received another Emmy nomination!



Award winning food journalist, blogger, author, nutrition communications consultant, television personality and registered dietitian nutritionist, CAROLYN O'NEIL MS RDN LD, believes “The More You Know, The More You Can Eat!”

Carolyn is the author of Southern Living’s best selling The Slim Down South Cookbook: Eating Well and Living Healthy in the Land of Biscuits and Bacon and co-author of The Dish on Eating Healthy and Being Fabulous winner “Best Health and Nutrition Book” at the World Food Media awards. Carolyn writes food, nutrition, travel and healthy lifestyle features for numerous publications including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, WebMD Magazine, Modern Luxury Magazines, Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Magazine and Best Self Magazine.

Her blog is www.TheHappyHealthyKitchen.com “good for people and the planet”.

A multi-award winning television journalist, Carolyn is seen regularly on NBC Atlanta & Company with food and nutrition focused cooking segments. She can also be seen as “The Lady of the Refrigerator” nutrition expert on Alton Brown’s Good Eats TV on Food Network wearing a tiara and ice blue ball gown.



Christiane Lauterbach, born and raised in Paris, writes about restaurants for Atlanta Magazine, publishes Knife & Fork, a sharply critical monthly newsletter about the dining and drinking scene and travels to top restaurants all over the United States. She raised two daughters who appreciate food as much as she does and rarely photographs what she eats, but loves to tweets under @xianechronicles.




Join The Shops Buckhead Atlanta for a Sunday afternoon complete with in-store activations, a french flower market, live music, cocktails, treats, kid's activations & more at The Shops Buckhead Atlanta.

Check back soon for a full listing of participating restaurants and retailers.

Contact Us

Questions? Concerns? Interested in volunteering for the Waiters' Race? Contact us!

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1. Why should I run?

Running in the 2019 Waiters’ Race means you get to be part of the a new Atlanta tradition. You will have the opportunity to represent your industry, your restaurant, and support your industry in a whole new way.

2. What is the Giving Kitchen and who do they help?

The Giving Kitchen (GK) is a non-profit organization whose sole mission is to provide emergency assistance to workers in Georgia's robust restaurant community through financial assistance and a network of community resources. Their vision is a restaurant community where crisis is met with compassion and care. To date, GK has awarded over 1,100 grants with over $1.9 million in grants to restaurant workers in crisis.

3. What is The Industry Fund?

Similar to The Giving Kitchen, The Industry Fund Inc is a new, local, non-profit organization that works to raise and generate funds to benefit members of the hospitality industry throughout Metro Atlanta, the Southeast, and beyond.

4. Do I have the opportunity to win a prize?

Absolutely, the organizers of the event have put together some great prizes. The grand prize winner will receive a traveling trophy to display in their restaurant and also two round-trip tickets to Paris!

5. I want to participate but I have to work that night. What should I do?

As members of the hospitality industry ourselves, the founders of The Industry Fund Inc. recognize the challenge you face. We suggest having an open conversation with your management team regarding your desire to participate. The race will take place sunday afternoon at 5:00PM on July 15, 2018. If your team absolutely cannot give you the evening off; then, at least you could still make it in for your shift. Albeit a little later than usual. As a 17-year veteran of the industry myself, I can relate to the struggles faced by your management team and am more than willing to assist you with the conversation and; will speak to your management team on your behalf if necessary.

6. How much does it cost to register?

Registration is $25 per waiter plus we expect each participant to bring a gift card (minimum $25 value) from their restaurant. 

7. When should I arrive for check-in and what do I need to bring/wear?

Check-in will begin at 3:00pm the day of the race. The race will begin at 5:00pm. Each participant should wear the uniform from their restaurant the day of the race. You will be given a race bib with your assigned race number.