Let the 2012 spring festival season begin

Lots to do outdoors Downtown today, as the spring festival season kicks off. It’s a beautiful day. Better apply some sunscreen!

The River City Brewers Festival is in Handy Park at Third and Beale today. There are two sessions, A (noon-4 PM) and B (6-10 PM). Buy a ticket, get a mug, and sample all the beer you want for four hours. I’ve been to this the past two years and have been impressed with it. They give you a good sized mug, and the volunteers working the booths pour generously. This is also a good place to get swag from your favorite breweries (it’s where I got my PBR headband). The past two years, the weather did not cooperate at all, but this year it looks to be ideal. If you did not purchase your ticket in advance, you better get there right at the beginning of the session and see if there are still tickets available. They cap the number of attendees per session so everyone can enjoy themselves. Remember to bring your ID, because they’ll be checking.

(Disclosure: They gave me free tickets for helping to get the word out.)

The other big outdoor event today is Mudbugs in March, happening in Court Square from 2:30 to 6:30 PM. This event will feature crawfish cooked the right way, with taters, corn, and sausage. There will also be live music and a gumbo contest. $5 to get in, crawfish purchase extra. If you go to either session of Brewfest your ticket to that festival will get you into Court Square. There’s also a $35 VIP pass that gets you all you can eat and preferred seating for the bands.

If you want to hear some late-night music after all the festivals end, I have two recommendations for you. Popular jam band FreeWorld plays the Saucer at 9:30. Over at the Brass Door, Mark Akin of the Subteens will take the stage in the Cavern at 10.

I’ve heard promising news about today’s Fire Sale at the Saucer, so my plan is to stop there at 11 and get a couple of pre-festival pints in. I’m bringing the camera today – the camera on the iPhone won’t be good enough, since the chance of me getting pics of the Nuh-Uh Girl eating is nearly 100%.