New Beer’s Eve, celebrated every year on April 6th, marks the end of Prohibition in the United States.
By Lola Gayle, Editor-at-large
New Beer’s Eve is an unofficial U.S. holiday celebrated annually on April 6, the night preceding the day the sale of beer became legal again in the United States, on April 7, 1933.
The beginning of the end of Prohibition in the United States occurred as a result of the Cullen–Harrison Act and its signing into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on March 23, 1933. This led to the Eighteenth Amendment being repealed on December 5, 1933, with ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Upon signing the legislation, Roosevelt made his famous remark, “I think this would be a good time for a beer.”
Sales of beer in the U.S became legal on April 7, 1933, in states that had enacted their own law allowing such sales. The beer had to have an alcohol content less than 3.2% by weight (4% by volume), compared to the 0.5% limit of the Volstead Act, because 3.2% was considered too low to produce intoxication.
On the evening of April 6, people lined up outside breweries and taverns, waiting for midnight when they would be able to legally purchase beer for the first time in over 13 years. Since then, the night of April 6 has been referred to as “New Beer’s Eve.” NOTE: New Beer’s Eve is quickly followed by “National Beer Day” on April 7.
Here are a few interesting facts about beer to get you in the drinking mood:
- Evidence of brewing goes back about 5,000 years.
- The Sumerians had a goddess of beer named Ninkasi.
- The study of fermentation in brewing is called zymurgy.
- Light can make beer go bad, or get “skunked.”
- First American President George Washington loved beer and had his own special recipe.
- The Texas State Fair is famous for serving fried beer.
- Beer was first packaged in a 12-ounce aluminum can in 1959.
- China and the U.S. are the top beer-producing countries.
- The fear of having an empty beer glass is called cenosillicaphobia.
- Former President Jimmy Carter legalized home breweries.
- In 2004, a black bear drank 36 cans of beer at a resort in Washington and passed out.
- Beer is the drink of choice for 44 percent of Americans.
DISCLAIMER: This is a repost of a previous article I wrote during my time trying to get a friend’s site off the ground. After two years and virtually no headway or money — and no promise of how long the site will remain online — I am forced to take back ownership of my content. Portions of the content have been updated.