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Beer and Sports
Beer and sports- they are like an old married couple, they cause a lot of fights and frequently fall right back into each others arms after every one of them. They rejoice in each others company at every victory and hug and weep in each others arms at every defeat-in short beer and sports are inseparable and will never divorce no matter what happens.
So how did such two imperfect partners end up in this perfect marriage? Well according to history their courtship began around the time when the world discovered “baseball” in 1870. To keep fans of the sport hooked on the promoters of the game needed to tie them in with something else as well and that’s when it hit them: men love sports and men love beer as well, and so began an unbreakable bond between beer and sports. Next came the world’s first ad combing beer and sports together. The Burke’s Beer Company released its ad featuring then famous ball players Cap Anson and Buck Ewing having chilled Burke’s Beer.
However, this blissful existence was soon disturbed by the arrival of the couple’s in-laws. By 1881 the promoters soon started getting reports of rowdy and drunk behavior of beer drinking fans at sporting events. To control this situation, the National League outlawed all ballpark beer sales.
But this was going to be a temporary separation between the lovers. The visionary manager of Pittsburg, Denny McKnight could not stand to see the two lovers separated for too long and therefore organized A.A, the American Association also know as the Beer and Whiskey League to push for this ban to be lifted.
The efforts of the A.A paved the way for Breweries to own their own teams and build their own ballparks where sports fans could watch games with a beer in hands. The A.A itself however, was dissolved by 1891. The love between beer and sports was so strong that it even stood the test of times like the Prohibition of 1920.
But a lot of people may wonder why this love is just between beer and sports-why not Whiskey and sports or some other form of alcohol? Well the truth lies in the pace of the sport itself. While sitting for hours, cheering for their teams, if instead of drinking beer fans were drinking whiskey, the sports events would have to be played near some hospital or paramedic center.
Apart from this there is also the logic that drinking beer with friends while watching the game has its own appeal and sporting venues know this very well and so do the beer manufacturers. Exploiting this very fact the Chicago Cubs alone sold more than 29,000 beers during each of their home games, which makes up almost a quarter of the stadium’s total concession business.
And this phenomenal revenue generating power is not just limited to sports stadiums only. It expands to sports bars as well. This is where sports fans can truly immerse their passion for the game into the intoxicating depths of beer. This is the birth place of various drinking games. Even though this sport is yet to be taken seriously, but it is undeniable that Beer Pong, Beirut and Scud to Quarters and Kings, each is a promising love-child of the never ending romance between beer and sports.
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