Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Zoo Brew!

Last Saturday, I went to a ridiculously fun event in Santa Barbara called Zoo Brew.  It's a fundraiser for the Santa Barbara Zoo, which is privately funded and therefore survives because of community support and events like this. So what the heck is Zoo Brew, you ask?

It's an annual event where 20+ breweries from the area show up to provide tastings of their (mostly) delicious ales. You get a commemorative tasting glass, unlimited samples, and "special animal encounters." (Unless you count the employee dressed in a giant giraffe costume, I'm not sure what they meant by "special animal encounters"...)

Anyway, tickets for this event sell out literally the day they go on sale, so I was really glad that Michelle reminded me to get mine, or I would have missed out on all the fun. I definitely hope to make this a yearly tradition as long as I live in Santa Barbara. It was just...SO...stinking...FUN!

I'll let the pictures (and captions) tell the rest of the story.
Here's our group! Ethan, Anna, Chelsea, Michelle and me!

EVERYONE had some variation of a pretzel necklace (I guess we missed THAT
memo), but this guy's made me happy because it had beef jerky strung on it, too!
That's what I'm pointing at, although you can't tell from the angle of the photo.)

We found some co-workers (like D on the left) and also met some complete
strangers (like the guy on the right). The great thing was, everyone we met
acted like old friends!

Another co-worker (A in the blue shirt) found the fabled penguin, so of
course we had to get photographic evidence of that encounter!

The penguin wasn't the only zoo animal we met! Ethan was super stoked to meet
this giraffe. (Please note Ethan's kindred T-shirt.)

Michelle and I found this wild meerkat! (Which apparently got mistaken for an
otter by a lot of people. Really?)

Gator AND Bill Murray in one shot! YES.

Moose! And I think the girl in stripes had a tiger hat?

And the official "special animal encounter" -- a "real life" GIRAFFE!
Yep, we were excited about this one.

Then there was this dude with a thousand cats on his shirt.

And what event would be complete without a Charlie Sheen T-shirt?

Did I mention that almost every one of these pictures with random people
in animal costumes/attire came about by me walking right up and shouting,

Cuz, yeah. That's basically what happened.

And no one ever denied us the chance to take photos with random strangers!
(Except the police detail that was there keeping the peace. They said no thanks.)

Only at Zoo Brew can you wear a shirt with a cow on it and make instant
friends with everyone around you.

Eventually I discovered that the zoo was selling pretzel necklaces.
GENIUS! Obviously this happened.

But before that, I did manage to make friends with a guy wearing lederhosen
who gave me one of his big pretzels.

And to commemorate our first (but SO not last) Zoo Brew, Michelle and I
got matching hats! (On the back, they say, "Drink Beer. Save Wildlife.")

So. Much. Fun.

Next year I'll try to rope Joe into coming along! Maybe he'll wear a full-body costume just to avoid getting a sunburn. (Har har.)


  1. I love that pic of you pointing at the guy's back. Did he know you were taking a pic of him when it happened?

    Looks like fun! Allan did this a few years back, and had a blast, though he, too, missed out on the pretzel necklace! One of these days I'd like to attend the Zoofari Ball, which I think is later in the summer. Anything to support our beloved zoo! :-)

    1. Nope, he didn't know I was taking that picture. Neither did the guy with all the cats on his shirt. Other than that, I think every picture (including tons I didn't post here) was a "PICTURE TIME!" occasion. :)

      It was so well organized and fun! I can't wait for next year. I'll definitely have to look into the Zoofari Ball; sounds fun! Do you get to dress up fancy?

    2. Yeah! If I recall correctly, it's like a cocktail party, with a different theme each year. I also recall tickets being really expensive, though-- something on the order of a couple hundred bucks a pop? Another reason it's not immediately on our bucket list ;-)


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