Something's gotta give. Pio Square is a wonderful location, looking out as it does on the downtown buildings. But it's only wonderful if you can get a beer in less than 20 minutes (or say, two minutes) and aren't in constant physical contact with all 23 of your closest neighbors. I stopped off after work on Friday for a full pour of Jim (just to be sure) and returned at 11:30 on Saturday. Friday night, even at five straight-up when I arrived, was insane. It was so crowded and so loud that I had to text Sally to find her once she'd gotten (almost instantly) lost in the crowd on her trek to get us tickets; when I tried to call, I couldn't even tell if she picked up. Saturday was all right until about three and then almost instantly the lines went from ten-person affairs to behemoths that ran the length of the tent.Preston Weesner, the impresario of the Fest, has done a fantastic job bringing in exceptional beers. Problem is, we're running up against physics here--bodies cannot be folded into other dimensions so they can all fit under the tent. Short of that, I fear Weesner's success at luring the masses in will result in something that looks like a Bombay train. My request last year was to move the thing. Admittedly, this cuts into the charm. I suppose you could also limit bodies in who get inside--but this would probably result in riots outside the tent. (In 2006, the tapping of Hair of the Dog "Jim" almost led to riots inside the tent). Perhaps stretching it out to five days will help. I plan to go on Saturday, so I can test this theory.
But if it's as bad as it has been the last couple years, I may have to rethink things in '09.