Venmo, Busch Beer agree to match Altoona man’s donation to UI Children’s Hospital

Over $56,000 has been raised for the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital after Altoona man Carson King plead strangers for beer money at ESPN College GameDay. Venmo and Busch Beer agreed to match donations when the fundraiser closes at the end of the month.


Shivansh Ahuja

Spectators watch the show during ESPN College GameDay before the annual Cy-Hawk football game between Iowa and Iowa State in Ames, IA on Saturday, September 14, 2019. This was GameDay’s first visit to Ames.

Kinsey Phipps, News Reporter

Anything for the kids? Busch Beer and Venmo agree.

Thousands of dollars were raised for the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital after an answered plea for Venmo donations to replenish Altoona resident Carson King’s Busch Light supply. Two days later, Venmo and Busch Beer announced they will match the rising total. 

It all started with a sign reading, “Busch Light Supply Needs Replenishing.” King displayed this white poster board proudly in the background of ESPN College GameDay at the annual Cy-Hawk game in Ames last weekend. He plastered his Venmo username on there as well, in hopes of earning some extra beer money. 

RELATED: Altoona man asks for Busch Light funds, donates to UI Children’s Hospital instead

As a result, hundreds of people donated and thousands of dollars were raised. King said he decided he wanted to do something worthwhile with the donations, and give it to the UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital. King and his family took to social media to speak out about the effort, which is now going viral. 

“I’ve learned how great people can be. People are chipping in any amount they can from 25 cents to 300 dollars,” King said. “It’s humbling for sure.”

Josh King, Carson’s brother, works for deWit Construction in Clive, Iowa. The company agreed to donate $300 for every roof they build until the end of the month, when Carson’s fundraiser closes. 

After two days of news interviews and Twitter buzz, King was approached by Busch Beer on Twitter Tuesday morning. The company expressed their wish to match donations and “throw in some of that Busch Light” he was looking for.

Since the donations began rolling in, King said he was trying to get Busch Beer’s attention. He said he was speechless when they finally agreed to match the donation.

“I didn’t know what to do really. I screenshot [the tweet] and sent it to my family. It was just overwhelming,” King said.

Just a few hours later, Venmo entered the conversation. The official Twitter of Venmo, a popular app used to send and receive money, told King they wanted to match his donations, too. 

Before Busch Beer and Venmo chimed in, the total amounted to $14,500, in just three days. It currently stands at approximately $56,000. King will keep donations open until the end of the month, before handing over the complete check to the UI Children’s Hospital in person. 

“It’s fantastic. It’s touching. Words are hard,” King said.