National Beer Day is not a national holiday, but when it hits today, it will likely be a cause to celebrate for bars owners and revelers alike.
Why April 7? Eighty-six years ago, a new federal law went into effect allowing the sale of beer containing less than 3.2% alcohol, the first legal alcohol allowed since Prohibition began in 1919.
Thank President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who signed the legislation, The Cullen-Harrison Act, in March 1933, which went into effect a month later. Enough states approved the 21st Amendment later that year to bring an end to Prohibition.
Some beer lovers a decade ago decided the day deserved celebration for its historic nature – they have a National Beer Day Facebook page – and social media has helped the holiday grow.
Enough people joined in last year to make National Beer Day the fifth-largest sales day of the year for local bars – bigger than New Year’s Eve, Mardi Gras, Super Bowl Sunday, or any day during Oktoberfest – according to small business data provider Womply, which analyzed transactions at 3,500 local bars and lounges nationwide.
Back to the history behind National Beer Day, when the beer ban was lifted in 1933, “historians have shared that more than 1.5 million gallons of beer flowed as Americans celebrated U.S. breweries,” said Julia Herz, craft beer program director for the Brewers Association and publisher of CraftBeer.com.
“April 7th is a day to recognize beer and the U.S. craft brewing community’s contributions to our country and our culture,” she said.
Last year, National Beer Day fell on a Saturday, which is already the biggest sales day of the week for bars. With the holiday on Sunday this year, “we expect it to be a big day but not quite as big as last year,” said Brad Plothow, vice president of brand and communications at Womply.
However, the holiday’s growth on social media – expect #NationalBeerDay to trend on Twitter, it did last year – could give it “a little more of a consumer lift as people get more familiarity with it,” he said.
Also, the day before National Beer Day is known as New Beer’s Eve, which is on a Saturday, could make for “a really impactful weekend,” Plothow said.
Local establishments can still cash in, he says. “A very simple social media campaign or email campaign to your customers letting them know you are going to be open, maybe you are running some kind of a deal, could go a really long way to bars who want to see a big surge in traffic,” Plothow said. “When you give consumers some incentive, people do respond.”
— Womply (@womply) April 2, 2019