21 February 2011

Dark Lord Day 2011 | No ticket, no attendance

If you attended Dark Lord Day 2010, this is probably what you remember:

And this:

Dark Lord Day 2010 Crowd Panorama (11:00 a.m.)
Click for a larger version

This year, it appears that Dark Lord Day's double-tailed line may be a thing of the past because, according to the FAQ page for the Dark Lord Day website, a big change is in store: a ticket will be required to enter the premises to attend the event. The same ticket will also get you your bottle allocation (however many that will be).

We're not sure what precisely this change means at this point. Our best guess is that Dark Lord Day will end up being more similar to a traditional beer festival. Otherwise, DLD logistics appear to be the same so far. Tickets tentatively go on sale on St. Patrick's Day (time TBA), which is when they went on sale last year. If you were lucky enough to snag a golden ticket last year, you probably remember being glued to Twitter all day on March 17, waiting for the tweet announcing that ticket sales had commenced. Ticket sales will again be announced on Twitter, followed by announcements on the Dark Lord Day website, RateBeer, and BeerAdvocate. Ticket sales will be online only.

Dark Lord Day 2011 is on Saturday, April 30.


  1. What a retarded effing idea. So much for the atmosphere I truly appreciated!

  2. Considering how much DLD sucked last year, I wasn't planning on going this year unless they made some changes. Tickets that cover admission + bottle allotment sound like a good step in the right direction.

  3. soooo, this should completely eliminate lines, right? I know last year they didn't sell out of bottles. Dark Lord has become increasingly worse from my first trip in 06 (which was awesome) to 09 (which was a clusterfuck). the bigger it gets the shittier it will be, that's just a sad fact.

  4. (this is a repost of a comment I left on beeradvocate):

    Let's give Floyds a little credit - throwing any beer event is hard work; there's so many little things to consider, it seems like everyone has "special circumstances", and you're dealing with drunk people. You just prepare as best you can and hold on until the thing is over.

    The problems with DarkLord Day came back again last year (2009's event went really well, you might recall) and this year they decided to really try and fix it permanently. It's not exactly fair to complain before we see how it goes - and even afterwards you've gotta remember that people are doing their best and really do want the event to go perfectly.

    From helping out with Winterfest and the summer festival I know that you just can't foresee everything, and when you consider that they never really know how many people they're going to be dealing with.. well, that's basically impossible to plan for. The limited tickets thing is the right way to go, at least they'll have some idea what to expect.

    (end of that bit)

    I'm sure the city of Munster wasn't just going to let this thing get bigger and bigger - I'm sure it had already grown bigger than they expected, even last year. If you happened to visit the industrial park around Floyds the day after (as we did), you would have encountered the most disgusting mess of trash strewn everywhere, just a complete fucking mess. Something had to change.

    As for bottle lines this year... hmm... hard to say. You've still got a single source for something everyone at the event is after - I think the lines are inevitable. Maybe the best thing you could do is break the lines up (by ticket number or something along those lines) but you've still gotta get the beer to folks..

    We'll see what happens. At least they're trying.

  5. I don't understand people complaining about this change. Maybe I'm just wearing my lawyer hat too much, but the crowd at DLD has gotten so large that it's basically unmanageable and gives rise to the potential for massive liability problems for 3F. And as Mike noted, the industrial park was completely trashed last year; 3F's neighbors could not have been happy at all about that. Moreover, 3F isn't prohibiting people from sharing beer with one another under this new scheme. Yes, people without tix will be left out in the cold apparently, but that's the case for any beer festival. In short, 3F is doing the logical and smart thing, both for themselves and for the attendees.

  6. And let me just echo Mike's comment about running a beer festival--it's much harder to do a good job than some people think. You learn from your mistakes and from unforeseen problems, and you make things better the next time around.

  7. I'm not complaining about the planning aspect, which, like you said, is difficult to impossible considering all of the variables. Like anything, it was better when it was smaller. now you get people who want it just because someone told them they want it, or it's worth a lot on ebay, or whatever... guess i'm just a curmudgeon. it's like bands man... i liked them BEFORE they hit it big!

  8. Events like DLD generate hype, grow the audience, and help make better beer noteworthy to the general public. While it's hard to measure, there's a ton of benefit in that as a fan of the beer (any craft beer, really). The more people know about it, the more people drink it, the more we have to chose from.

    As for people showing up because some one told them they want it - isn't that how it starts with everything? I can't imagine most folks just stumbled across Floyds on DarkLord Day #1. Everything starts somewhere.

    I can certainly understand where you're coming from (I saw Radiohead in a club once, after all), but there's a reason people are showing up - it's good beer. And you don't have to have some weird insider knowledge or a connoisseur's background to figure that out.