Bottoms up!

Bun B, beer pong and suds guzzling infuse Houston Beer Festival with riotous fun

Houston Beer Fest is all about Bun B, beer pong and suds guzzling

Houston Beer Fest June 2013 crowd venue
The third annual Houston Beer Festival packed Tranquility Park and Hermann Park Square with beer-guzzling crowds. Houston Beer Fest/Facebook
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 smiling girl
Greetings from this Houston Beer Festival fan. Saint Arnold Brewing Co./Facebook
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue City Hall
City Hall played backdrop to the beer festival Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue
Eight-five beer stations and plenty of food stations fueled the fun. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue reflection pool
The City Hall reflection pool served as a chilling pond for revelers. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 Saint Arnold Brewing Co. booth and people
The young and the restless joined the beer fest. Saint Arnold Brewing Co./Facebook
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 people eating on lawn
Chillin' on the grass at Houston Beer Festival. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue girl in fountain
Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue booths and more
Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 couple
Loving their suds at Houston Beer Festival. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 couple
Fans of Houston Beer Festival. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 band
Bands performed throughout the day on four stages. Courtesy photo
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue booths
The partying throng. Photo by Jason Diaz/"Danger" Photography
Houston Beer Fest June 2013
City Hall grounds provided the best place for resting on the green. Photo by Desiree Alvarez
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 crowd venue
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 smiling girl
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue City Hall
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue reflection pool
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 Saint Arnold Brewing Co. booth and people
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 people eating on lawn
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue girl in fountain
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue booths and more
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 couple
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 couple
Houston Beer Fest June 2013 band
Houston Beer Festival June 2013 crowd venue booths
Houston Beer Fest June 2013

The third annual Houston Beer Festival was actually my first experience in the suds-saturated scene that rocked like a massive outdoor house party — that is, if the house was City Hall and the partygoers were playing drunken beach volleyball in the reflection pool at Hermann Square Park.

Saturday's beer-infused mayhem spread across three blocks from the grounds around City Hall to Tranquility Park with 85 stations representing local craft breweries as well as brew houses from Texas, across the U.S. and the globe. So heavy were the crowds that by 7 p.m. most every beer and food station had long lines. (One even ran out of corn dogs.) The popular brands with fans standing in line included Flying DogBrooklynNo LabelShinerLeprechaun Cider CompanyMaui Brewing Co.Saint ArnoldShock TopKarbach and Dogfish Head.

With general admission starting at $25, why not? The entry fee got you get a nifty Houston Beer Fest '13 cup stuffed with 10 beer tickets, each one worth a 2.5 oz. sample serving (or maybe a bit more if your server was generous). Those beer tickets were sacred, even though you could buy more if needed. With all those brewskies at hand, of course, there were beer pong and flip cup competitions.

Great tunes completed the party vibe, with four stages providing non-stop sounds that started in the early afternoon and went all night, with headliners like Bun BThe Spazmatics and Reverend Horton Heat. The beer guzzling throng grooved to the sounds.

Houston's "Draped Up" star, Bun B had the crowd swaying, throwin' up hands and dancing any blues away. Known for paying homage to his former rap group, UGK, the rapper and his cronies revved up the audience with "Int'l Players Anthem."

Cougar alert! The franchise '80s cover band, The Spazmatics seemed to draw a big and varied crowd at the Texas Craft Beer Stage. Eccentricity at its best, the band was dressed in Pee Wee Herman-esque costumes with neck braces, helmets and sweatbands. Nevertheless, they knew how to keep the party going. Songs like "Footloose" sent some back to the good ol' days, reminding all the cougars just how much they loved Kevin Bacon . . . and removing undergarments to throw at the stars? Yes, sadly that happened too. 

All stages hosted fine talent. But in case you missed it, here are some fun bands worth checking out: New York City Queens, The Chee-Weez and Big Sam's Funky Nation