The timing of Philly Beer Week has been violently debated since its infancy. PBW, as Twitter people probably call it, was originally held in March and remained there for another year. Because of the huge success and beautiful weather, it was moved to June. As usual, whenever change happens, people went crazy. Some people thought March was perfect, citing good crowds, and earlier, warmer springs caused by the never ending gifts of global warming. The June crowd likes it because it’s a good boost to the beginning of the slow season and chicks get wasted faster in the heat. You are bound to hear it come up a couple hundred times over the course of Beer Week. I bet it comes up at every board meeting.
I personally see the benefit to each. I lean towards June, but that’s only because I like to protect it from the 21 day St. Patrick’s Day celebration. I have this reoccurring nightmare that the city can’t get Rochefort anymore because some “Irish” bro threw up on the wrong monk. Admittedly, we had great weather those years we had PBW in March, but at some point, we’d get killed with a wet and freezing week and it’d be a disaster. The best thing about PBW is the ability to bounce around and hit a million different events or bars in a couple days. Being stuck in one bar watching a bunch of dudes drinking semi-rare beer sounds like every other city’s beer week. It might rain in June, but it won’t be freezing. Girls never get wasted when it’s wet and freezing. They get home, warm and asleep. Alone.
Of course, moving back to March can make sense too. I like the fact that it’s a fun way to celebrate the end of another long, cold, awful winter. I enjoy winter up until about the second week of January. By March, all I want to do is run around and hang out with the other people who bunker down and skip February. Also, pumpkin beers start coming around.
Let’s talk fall. I’m sure it’s come up in the past, but sometime in September or October has to be seem as a possibility. First of all, they’re great months. Possibly the best two. You either do it early in September to celebrate the birth of another football season, or late October after family vacations are all paid off. I don’t like the idea of screwing around during the Eagles season, but it lends itself to some cool events and marketing ideas to the fans of the teams that come here. Chilly weather really lends itself well to Beer Week too.
We can eliminate months November through February because it’d be ridiculous. I wouldn’t even go to those Beer Weeks. Because of drinking, I am an old man now and the threat of snow keeps me in the house for three days. Besides, with all of the holidays jammed in there, it’d be impossible. I guess it’d be kind of funny to have it one year from December 23th until January 2rd, just to ruin everyone’s lives.
I’m tempted to vote for the fall, but I’d have to say to leave it where it is. For those of us that leave “work” at 5 or 6 in the morning during PBW, June is a lovely time of year. More importantly, I think it’s psychologically easier for people to come in from out of town. When it comes down to it, isn’t that the point? The purpose of Beer Week is to show the rest of the world that we’re the planet’s best beer drinking city, so I think it’s important to make it as easy as possible for people to see it. It’s not like we’re trying to convince ourselves of it. We know how great we are. We say it all the time.