In the D.C. Defender game against Seattle this weekend, the Beer Snake reemerged. Stadium security ended up confiscating the fan creation and then the fans threw lemons on the field. The beer snake does need to be freed but it could use some support. In the short lived history of the XFL, this is a tradition among the D.C. fans. A Barstool Sports tweet said it best here that a tradition like this one is “what makes people watch.” J-Allen wrote a great piece here on our site asking if the XFL will survive. This tradition and others can be an innovative way to allow it to survive and thrive.
Beer Snake invention is global
The Beer Snake fan invention is global, most notably in cricket matches. A “Beer snake” is a stacking of plastic cups that have been drunk by fans stacked consecutively until it begins to take the form of a snake. Then the fans hold the line of cups and mess with it so it looks like the snake is dancing on the crowd. Below are four instances of the beer snake phenomenon at different sporting venues.
1. Australia – Sri Lanka Cricket match, 2013
The game was rained out but that didn’t stop the fans. In this article from the web archive and News Limited Network here, the snake ranged 300 feet (100 m.) A spokesman for the Cricket New South Wales team said that although the beer snake compiling and dancing usually annoys fans and is avoided for safety reasons, but it was allowed because the fans were having so much fun. They also made it count by setting a record.
2. Winnipeg Blue Bombers game in 2010
As per this article via the CBC, the football club banned the fan invention because fans had complained at being cut and drenched by discarded plastic cups from the snake line. The snake had been a regular site at games at Canad Inns Stadium. The club president said that they would be enforcing a zero tolerance policy at future games if the snake was seen growing.
3. Minnesota Wild game, 2021
The group 10,000 takes based out of Plymouth, MN sponsored a beer snake during a December 2021 hockey game vs. the Phoenix Coyotes. In this article here from Fan Nation, they highlighted the event and how ESPN football analyst Booger McFarland didn’t approve (so what.)
4. D.C. Defenders vs. Seattle Sea Dragons, 2023
The D.C. fans wanted to resurrect the beer snake tradition from the last iteration of the XFL in 2020. Read the article here, where they made a 75 foot long beer snake spanning nine rows. Then they started to do one in the Defenders opening game but Audi field stadium officials confiscated the cups. The next thing that happened was that fans had smuggled lemons into the stadium and then began to throw it on the field to protest the beer snake being cancelled. Read the rest of the article here.
Is the “beer snake” banned from the XFL stadiums?
#FreeTheSnake @XFL2023 pic.twitter.com/ixEtd6eCno
— alex (@highIightheaven) February 20, 2023
As of this post, it has not been banned but the security at Audi Field took it down quick. This post from the site sportskeeda.com said that the league banned it but doesn’t show any statement. D.C. has an official beer made by the local brewery City State Brewing. Perhaps it could get in touch with the people at 10,000 takes and find a way to do it with less wetness and so that it doesn’t fall on people. I know I hardly did “the wave” during football games and there were many people around me trying to wave their arms and get people to do so, so a beer snake that doesn’t leak and can be held up without falling should be allowed to continue.
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