ASHEVILLE– In amazing test of wit, will, fortitude, and strength, local Asheville media outlets went 24 hours without mentioning Beer City USA.
Staff members of the Mountain Xpress and the Citizen Times faced off in a Beer City USA quiet game challenge this past Wednesday. The quiet game rules dictated each publication to refrain from publishing, saying, texting, and tweeting the term Beer City USA.
“It was definitely tough, considering my main responsibility is to cover what is happening in the local beer scene,” said Tony Kiss, Beer Guy for the Citizen Times. “Thankfully there was other local beer news going on like award winning brewer Ben Pierson resigning from the LAB over a contract dispute.”
The stakes of the quiet game were high. If a member of either staff broke the silent pledge, the losing publication would have to feature a week’s worth of content dedicated to the lemonade flavored malt beverage Mike’s Hard Lemonade.
“Well they say ‘a hard day calls for a hard lemonade’, but a week? That’s a hard week. I had a few close calls during the day,” said Bill Rhodes, writer for the Xpress. “Some tourist asked me what Asheville was known for and I started to say we are Bee…..and caught myself and just said Bee City USA. Someone out there now thinks we are known as Bee City USA. I guess that makes sense with two Tupelo Honey restaurants in town.”
Cottageville, S.C. actually touts the title of Bee City USA. For the small price of $4 one gets access to Bee City USA’s educational program and petting zoo.
“You can pet bees safely?” asked Rhodes.
The Citizen Thymes conducted a one-man study on bee petting and results showed you cannot pet bees safely, save your $4.
The Xpress and Citizen Times ended Wednesday’s Beer City USA quiet game in a virtual tie, with neither side mentioning Beer City USA. One Asheville citizen hopes the quiet game will set a trend of both publications covering more important issues.
“Good. Now maybe the newspapers will cover something that matters to the rest of USA, and will attract some people besides drug users, homeless, and trust fund kids,” said Gary Wayne Mize, a retired alien life form from the planet Melmac, that now lives in Arden and is a top commenter on the Citizen-Times.com website.
Mize made a very similar comment on Kiss’s Friday Beer City USA coverage that revealed Grand Rapids, Mich. had a slight lead over Asheville in voting.
Screen shot of Mize’s comment:
Mize’s hope of different coverage did not come true. Both publications have mentioned Beer City USA multiple times since Wednesday’s challenge. The Xpress had a countdown clock on its website to notify individuals how long they had left to vote for Asheville as Beer City USA. Mize was not invited to the Xpress’s Beer Year Eve party.
“Where did everyone meet to watch the keg drop at midnight?” said Mize. “No I’m not mad I wasn’t invited. I wouldn’t have been able to make it to midnight for my Beer Year’s kiss anyways.”