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Good Beer Hunting

Jan 17, 2024

Football and beer tend to go together without much thought. But in places like Pope County, Arkansas, alcohol is noticeably absent from tailgate coolers, plastic Solo cups, and concession stands. That’s because the area, which is home to Arkansas Tech University, is also one of the state’s 29 dry counties, where access to alcohol is restricted thanks to political influence, conservative mindsets, and tradition left from the time of Prohibition. 

In his first piece for Good Beer Hunting titled “No Blitz — How Arkansas Tech University Fans Tailgate in a Dry County,” freelance writer Brian Sorenson portrays a small, but proud slice of the American South, where sports like football dominate much of the culture. That culture, he says, lags behind the more liberal coastal areas of the United States, but that doesn’t mean it’s less worthy of attention. In our conversation, he describes his hope for readers and listeners to set aside their notions of what they think Arkansas is like, and to instead experience it through fresh eyes and open minds. 

You’ll hear about his background in beer, football, writing, and the state of Arkansas, where he grew up used to rowdy sports fans fueled by alcohol. For this story, he was fascinated by the idea of separating the two, and shares some of the surprises he came across while writing the piece. It’s an insider’s look at seemingly contradictory ideologies, and it’s likely you’ll walk away with a new framework from which to view a different, but beautiful, way of life.