Servers and bartenders across the country have been receiving massive tips from a mystery source known only by the Instagram handle @tipsforjesus. The account, which has more than 46,000 followers, shows photos of receipts and happy restaurant and bar employees, some of whom have just received tips of several thousands of dollars.
Some say there are several people behind the generous tipping, but Gawker's ValleyWag media blog is reporting that former PayPal vice president Jack Shelby is behind the giant gratuities.
According to Food Beast, TipsforJesus has left more than $80,000 in tips since starting the Instagram account in September. Over the weekend a photo was posted at Bo's Kitchen & Bar Room in New York City.
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On Friday, TipsforJesus left a nice Christmas present right in our own backyard. The Instagram account shows a photo of a receipt at Phoenix's Crudo, which included a $2,500 tip. A representative from the restaurant confirmed that the tip went to Micah Olson, Bar Crudo owner and mixologist. On the receipt, TipsforJesus also dubbed Crudo "Best Restaurant in Phoenix."
Shelby hasn't confirmed whether or not he is in fact the generous benefactor, but the Daily Mail reports that he owns homes in each of the states where TipsforJesus have been received, including Arizona.
Robbie Schulz, co-owner of the Alley Bar in Ann Arbor, Michigan, received a $7,000 tip in September and confirms that he really did get the money. (He shared it with the other staff who were working that night.) He tells the Daily Mail that the "TipsforJesus crew" were "friendly, polite, nice and a pleasure to serve." They paid with an American Express Black Card.