A few of my Twitter friends organized a pub crawl since I love beer and Asheville is Beer City USA 2010! Gary (@AskAsheville), Amanda (@AVLCustomCloset), Maria (@SalonBlueRidge), and John (Maria’s boyfriend) met at Barley’s Tap Room (@BarleysTapPizza) where we sampled some of the 50+ craft beers on tap, along with some pizza. Barley’s has 2 floors; the first floor is the main restaurant area and the second floor is where the pool tables are (no food served upstairs). It’s a big place and stayed crowded the entire time we were there, which was a couple of hours.
On the way to our second stop, we passed Pritchard Park and enjoyed a little of the Friday night drum circle. The Park was packed and the drumming was very entertaining. By then, it was dark and we could see the police circling. I guess they allow the drum circle until a certain time, but there were many under-age kids around and want to avoid anything inappropriate. I must say that I have never spent any time downtown at night and was quite amazed at how crowded the city was. Everyone, local and tourist, was out in force, enjoying the street entertainment and balmy weather.
The second stop on our crawl was Thirsty Monk’s Pub (@monkpub). Here, we tried something called a Flight, which had 4 sample size beers from light to dark. I tried the Highland Cattail Peak Wheat (light) and the Green Man IPA (medium) with a citrusy taste. I was actually surprised that I liked the medium beer because I usually don’t. We also met up with a couple of other Asheville Tweeters, John (@SimplyWired) and his friend (no Twitter handle that I know of).
Next, we headed over to Athena’s which was a small club. Definitely not a pub, but I did drink a bottle of Highland Gaelic Ale. There was a little dancing. I got a good chuckle. While dancing with Amanda and Maria, a man came up to our group and gave me a very back-handed compliment. He said that although I was the oldest of our group, I had some good moves. Years ago, I might have been offended, but I actually laughed. I appreciated that he thought I danced the best of the three, for an old lady.
Our last stop on the tour was Tressa’s Downtown Jazz and Blues Club. There was live music, but not a lot of people there. I had a beer, I can’t remember what kind. Everyone else started doing shots of Patron (tequila), but that’s not my thing. For one, I hate tequila. Second, I wouldn’t mix beer and liquor. The consequences are not good. One interesting thing about this bar was the huge jar of condoms outside the bathroom for patrons to take with them. I had never seen anything like that before, but thought, nice idea. Safety is good.
By the time we finished at Tressa’s, it was 1:30 am and I needed to get home and sleep before getting up to cook breakfast for guests at the Inn on Saturday morning. On the way home, I stopped at Ingles (@Ingles) for some strawberries and blueberries. I was home and in bed by 2:00 am, a time I haven’t seen in a long time.
This birthday celebration was fun for several reasons: 1) I haven’t been out in a couple of years or on a pub crawl in about 15 years! 2) I met some really nice people through Twitter, and 3) while I was on the crawl, we were all FourSquaring our locations which post to my Facebook Page and family and friends around the country were commenting while we were crawling.
I am solidly in favor of the social media movement. It has allowed me to connect and re-connect with family, friends, and people from my past through Facebook. And, I have been meeting new business contacts and friends locally through Twitter and FourSquare. The sharing and exchange of information via text messages, photos, videos, and blogs has opened up a whole new world to me. If not for Twitter, I would not have enjoyed such an interesting birthday celebration. If anyone is thinking about jumping on the social media bandwagon or has resisted joining, I highly recommend that you reconsider. It’s a great way to connect with the big world out there. Maybe your next celebration will be different and unexpected.