ACL Tailgating Party at Black Sheep Lodge

Word association game time! Quick, when I say ACL, what do you think of? Booze? Cool, me too.

It’s long been a myth that ACL was created to bring great bands to Zilker Park and put Austin on the festival map before SXSW got really big. The truth is that ACL is first and foremost a great opportunity to plan an entire day of drinking and not feel ashamed about it. Sure, outdoor BBQs and family reunions offer similar benefits, but ACL has both of those beat in terms of drinking excuses. For one, ACL has less opportunities to burn yourself than barbeques, and compared to reunions, it has less opportunities to run into that cousin who keeps telling you about her strange medical conditions.

Ask the mud goblins. ACL is for drinking.

The only problem with doing all of your drinking at the park is that it gets pricey. While the Rock and Recycle program would greatly appreciate if you spent all of your discretionary cash on cans of beer, that’s a tough cost to incur on top of the dough you had to shell out for tickets. What’s the solution? Sandwich drinking!

Unlike ACL, notice the lack of daisy chains of sorority girls holding hands and shoving past you.

Before you envision something disgusting, sandwich drinking doesn’t involve a blender and a run to Thundercloud. It’s the term I use for getting cheap drinks before and after an event that has pricier alcohol; the perfect combination of pre-partying and post-partying. During this year’s ACL, try getting your sandwich drank on at Black Sheep Lodge. Not only is it a great place to chill out without being pressed against sweaty torsos or trapped in a haze of weed, it also offers a ton of options to imbibe.

Located in the south of Austin, Black Sheep is a short drive/bike from Zilker and features ACL drink specials each day of the festival. Quench your thirst and keep you wallet intact on Friday and Saturday with affectionately named $2 “white trash” cans (PBR and Lone Star tallboys, Schlitz, etc.). For the super thirsty, Friday and Sunday features all pitchers at a $2 discount and $2 cans of Imperial Beer Thursday through Sunday all day and night. Check out all the drink specials on the event page.

Just remember, it’s never too early to start preparing for National ACL Drinking Weekend. Oh, and there might be some music or something too. So, you know, enjoy Coldplay or whatever.

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