Saturday, April 5th at 12pm

Location: Atlantic Station

The Carnival’s Coming To Town!


 Step right up! Don’t worry height restrictions don’t apply here; you can be 10 feet or 2 feet to ride these ride. With the beautiful Atlanta downtown skyline, blue sky, and the red flags of a carnival tent swaying in the wind, The Beer Carnival rolled into town with a plethora of engaging carnival games and beer. On this glorious day there were so many carnival games, it was almost impossible to figure out where to start. To the right were games and beer to the left were games and beer, what shall we do first?

From Angry Beers, a live take on Angry Birds, to Keg Racers that pits friends against each other in a race to glory, to several plastic ducks taking a swim down a watery luge, there was a little something to do for everyone (and their mothers!). My favorite game had to be the Duck Luge. I know, I know there was a game called Surgery! that was a BIG take on Operation! It was cool and deserves a little shock mention but it wasn’t my favorite. Why you ask? Water! Not only was it a little unique, it also involved pumping water that may or may not work or splash all over the participants and it just made for a really fun time.  I watched one girl laughing so hard that her pump didn’t work well that it really was contagious to all the people watching and playing.

Then, there were the Keg Racers, where you could sit on a plastic keg with wheels and race one of your friends around a short track and walk away with bragging rights. The line was pretty long and some people were really good at it and some people just would fall off or putt around the track. It was pretty funny to watch but it didn’t matter, the participants really had a lot of fun.  Another one of the games was the Beer Graffiti Wall, which was totally full by 2:30pm. There were tons of sayings and names on it but not a lot of real estate. So, we took to the ground and wrote our website on the ground and took a picture. Free advertising (kind of)? Yes, Please. Genius! Finally, there was Top Spin that allusive game that we played several times and just couldn’t win. It became a mission to win! What I found was that no matter how hard we tried we couldn’t win. It was like we could squirt the target all day but it was really random if you won or not. What is the trick to this game, I wonder? Is it like finding Bigfoot and just never going to happen? I guess so for this year. I would like to mention some of the other games that included BOWL! a big bowling game, some traditional carnival games like throwing balls at cans, to floating beer pong. I can’t monition them all here!

Let’s not forget the beer: three to mention. First, O’Dempsy’s Your Black Heart Stout was there, so you know which one I went back to a few times as they have one of my favorite stouts. I’ve had this beer so many times and just love it. Highly recommended. In the VIP area were two specialty beers that turned my head, the first being Starr Hill Little Red Roostarr Coffee Cream Stout. I took a chance on this one even though it had the word “milk” in it and it was worth it. It was a gloriously smooth with a strong chocolate nose and a creamy finish. One of the best beers I’ve ever had and no it isn’t better than my favorite beer Wake-N-Bake so don’t ask.  The other was the Red Brick’s 20th Anniversary Ale.  It was a Russian Imperial Stout aged in Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels. Red Brick’s website quotes it at 10.5 percent ABV and one of its biggest beers yet. It was a good big beer with a lot of up front malt and a smooth bourbon finish. I would recommend it. Finally,back out in the general area was Eventide Stout. I finally found a place that has a stout that is in their regular brewery rotation. YES! It’s really hard to find stouts on tap all year round at a brewery.

This carnival wasn’t about the bearded lady, elephants, clowns, or the Amazing Houdini the Magnificent; it was a fun time with games and beer. There was so much to do and so little time. Next year, I’m playing more games and by God I’m going to win Top Spin.