Today is truly a wonderful day. Not only because Thursday is the new Friday, but because today celebrates one of the most popular (and my personal favorite) style of craft beer, the India Pale Ale.
Today, August 4th is International IPA Day, or as it is tagged in social media, simply #IPADay.
This year marks the first time that #IPADay has been celebrated. It is the brainchild of self described "beer evangelists and social media personalities" Ashley Routson (@TheBeerWench) and Ryan A Ross (@RyanARoss). This is not a corporate sponsored event, but a grassroots social media effort to celebrate craft beer, says Routson on her blog. She runs the beer blog Drink With The Wench.
The point of #IPADay? Besides celebrating the intense, hoppy, malty flavors that comes from a great IPA, it is about advancing craft beer through social media in the same way that wine has been helped by the new technology. Routson asks why the craft beer people are slow to adopt a strong social media presence? She cites the wine community and their #Chardonnay day and #cabernet day and asks why not us?
The moral of the story is such: I love what social media has done for the advancement of wine and I wanted to see the same thing happen for craft beer. Period. End of story. If you want to see wine’s social media impact continue to exceed that of craft beer, by all means, reject IPA Day.
International #IPADay is an event geared towards making craft beer more accessible to the masses. Please encourage all of your non-beer drinking friends to take a break from their normal beverage routines to join the worldwide craft beer celebration on August 4th! This is a time for education and advocacy! We should all set out with the goal of converting at least one person, if not the whole world of drinkers, into craft beer lovers!
The way you can participate (and the way that I will be participating later this evening) is by sharing photos, videos, tweeting, Facebook posting, blogging, etc. while using the hashtag #IPADay. Oh, and of course by drinking - a nice robust IPA, if you can.
The event has a page on Eventbrite, and it lists the host breweries, social media sponsors, and featured bloggers.
For and event created by two people with a little over 10,000 Twitter followers between them, #IPADay is rocking Twitter today.
A quick search on hashtags.org shows a huge volume of tweets with the #IPADay tag rolling in every couple minutes. The hashtag is trending currently in Chicago, Raleigh, and Denver.
And local brewpubs and craft beer stores have adopted the new holiday. In Lexington, for instance, local craft beer store and drinkery The Beer Trappe is pouring some special IPAs tonight in honor of the day.
Hopefully it will catch on enough for Google to add it to their search results as a "special occasion." They just recently began adding specific dates to the top of search results when you search something like "national popcorn day." Hopefully, next year when people search "international IPA day," August 4th will pop up in bold at the top of the results.