In a move that should be easy enough for Wisconsin residents, listening to polka can lead to free beer.
This is Oktoberfest season; 2020’s peculiarities (to put it mildly) put the brakes on most traditional Oktoberfest celebrations, but Leinenkugel Brewing Company wants to do what it can – creatively.
Leinenkugel’s, the legendary beer that started up in Chippewa Falls back in 1867, hosts the Oktoberfest celebration in its hometown, normally held every year at the Northern Wisconsin State Fairgrounds, is one of the best in the state. They typically name a Festmeister or two, tap the Golden Keg, and have a parade from Leinenkugel’s Brewery in Chippewa Falls, up several blocks on Highway 124 in town, and then over into the fairgrounds for a big party. State Trunk Tour founder Eric Paulsen had the pleasure of partaking in Oktoberfest there for a Discover Wisconsin episode one year, and got a brewery tour from none other than Dick Leinenkugel himself!
But anyway, on to the free beer, it’s probably why you clicked to read this. It’s an easy link: https://www.leinie.com/polka. Just listen for 60 seconds (and it’s fun beer-drinking music), and then the site pops you to a keyword you can text to get a free digital coupon, good for one six-pack of Leinie’s Oktoberfest beer. A creative, and very Wisconsin-y way to win some beer, ya??
Leinenkugel’s says it’s doing this promotion so people can still raise a stein (or a six-pack) even though many Oktoberfest celebrations have been canceled because of COVID-19.
Different rules apply to different states. Those 21 and over can claim the free beer in Wisconsin, along with Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, and Wyoming, along with Washington D.C.
In some states, they’re not allowed by law to give away free beer (can you imagine?), but residents can take 50% of their purchase. Those states include California, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, South Dakota, Virginia and Washington.
For whatever reason, they can’t run this promotion in Alabama, Arkansas, Hawaii, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Texas, Utah and West Virginia. So take pity on them, and remind them we’re cooler that they are.
It’s also a beautiful time of year to visit the Leinie Lodge in person. Head to Chippewa Falls and experience all the city has to offer, including Irvine Park with its awesome free zoo, a vibrant downtown with shops, the Cook-Rutledge Historic Mansion, additional wineries and distilleries, nearby Lake Wissota State Park, and then take a State Trunk Tour drive up Highway 178 for a nice ride along the Chippewa River up past Jim Falls to Cornell. But get your free beer by listening to polka first!