This week’s Top 5 is something that is truly near and dear to my heart (and I am sure most of yours); Partying. I have been fortunate to travel a bit here and there. So far I can’t really say any of my destinations have been disappointing. Today I am going to talk about 5 parties where a guy can put away his distinguished qualities and cater more towards his ruffian nature.
5. Biketoberfest – Daytona Beach, FL
This is one of my favorite annual events! Do I really need to explain why? This place is chock full of all the good stuff; people, drinking and tons of custom motorcycles. There is hardly a full block you can walk that doesn’t have something that appeals to your styles and tastes.
I enjoyed my days on the strip shopping for discounted motorcycle apparel and gear. Most shops have crazy deals during this time due to the influx of patrons. More than just moto-gear, there are a few shops along Main Street that make hand rolled Grand Marnier dipped ascots. Personally, those little smokes make the trip.
Each night during Biketoberfest there are events showcasing crazy prizes, free swag, and drink specials. Along with the drink specials, there are usually scantily clad women hustling shots for extra tips. With the main events being held on Main Street, it was hard not to fall into a watering hole or 5 while eye balling some of the coolest rides on the east coast.
4. Fantasy Fest – Key West, FL
For more of a risqué approach to your conventional partying, try Fantasy Fest located in Key West Florida. As soon as I arrived I might as well have thrown my watch in my bag because I definitely crossed over into island time. Everything is laid back and altogether exciting.
This event is often called the Mardi Gras of the south. Being that the actual Mardi Gras is in Louisiana, I guess the fine folks in Key West took some liberties with the name given their location.
Just like New Orleans, Key West plays home to thousands of visitors just for this event. Every day and night the festivities have a theme and it seems like everyone comes out to play along. This literally takes the phrase “it takes all kinds” to a whole new level. The themes varied from Togas one night to Pirates to Angels and Devils. There was truly a good mix of it all. What made this trip awesome was the laid back atmosphere that resembled nothing more than a huge costume party with half nude (and sometimes full nude) people. Did I mention all this takes place on the ever famous Duvall Street? With that, let’s do a little math; Duvall Crawling + Costume Party = Nonsense of the upmost.
Fair warning, if you happen to be homophobic, this is not the place for you. This area has a strong gay community and they show their pride all year long. If you aren’t homophobic, then you will have a blast.
3. Rugby World Cup – Locations Vary
I was fortunate enough to be able to venture off to the Rugby World Cup hosted by New Zealand in 2011. This was hands down, one of the most fun places I had ever been. Each game is held in a different location throughout the country. I was able to indulge in a series of “day drinking’ activities in each one of the host locations. Some of them included, virtual goal kicking, live concerts, and open venue projection Tv screenings of the games located in other cities.
I couldn’t help myself but drink all day long in preparation for the big show. During the games, I was going insane along with a ton of international fans. I learned quickly that overseas drinking is definitely quite the adventure. I also realize that people come from all walks of life to be at these events and when they get there, all they want to do is party. For me, a 24 hour flight deserved good sport and good drinks. Add on great international company and that’s a cocktail for success.
2. Mardi Gras – New Orleans, LA
This one is no surprise, or at least shouldn’t be. Mardi Gras is 5 days of booze, beads, and boobs. To top off the “3 B’s’ of Mardi Gras I was surrounded by Cajun culture and delicious food. I could continually go on about the things you see on Girls Gone Wild or Cops, but that would just be me ranting.
My friends and I would kick our day off drinking while watching all the floats pass by our balcony hurling beads. After the floats leave and we had collected enough beads to venture in to the night we would grab some more drinks and walk the block and some change to Bourbon Street. Fast forward through the night, beads gone, and stumble back to our hotel. We grab a couple hours of sleep and repeat it for the duration.
1. Oktoberfest – Munich Germany
This is another amazing festival that has everything you could possibly ask for. Great food, great culture, great rides, and great beer are all included when you are at the Theresienwiese (fairgrounds for Oktoberfest).
Some of Germanys top breweries have tents at this event showcasing their style of brew. Some of these companies include Paulaner, Spaten, Lowenbrau, and my favorite Augustiner. I was getting after those sweet unfiltered German brews a liter at a time but that proved to be quite the feat. Before 1 in the afternoon my friends and I were wasted on the train back to our condo.
This was my favorite event thus far because I love good beer and no drama. With all the drunken people I saw during my trip, I assumed brawls would ensue regularly. Truthfully, I had a hard time finding many drunken people that weren’t down right jovial. People sometimes were friendlier then I’d like but none the less harmless. I guess when you have to share a park bench in order to be served; you will get along and make friends with just about anyone.
Hope you guys enjoyed the read. Party on Ruffians.