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River Rat unveils new beer specifically made for Columbia Fireflies

Bottoms Up: Luminescent Lager

The Columbia City Fireflies partnered with River Rat to create the ideal baseball beer: the luminescent lager. Mike Tourville, proprietor and Drew Walker, brewmaster, discuss the process of creating the all-American brew.
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The Columbia City Fireflies partnered with River Rat to create the ideal baseball beer: the luminescent lager. Mike Tourville, proprietor and Drew Walker, brewmaster, discuss the process of creating the all-American brew.

Spirit Communications Park is about to be aglow again with the second season of Fireflies baseball.

Whether you’re a fan of America’s national pastime or just want to see new Fireflies team member Tim Tebow in action, there is tradition to uphold – namely, having a hot dog, eating popcorn and enjoying a cold beer.

And when it comes to beer, you have options.

First, as you enter the main gates, there’s a SweetWater beer bar. Then there are seven beer portables around the ballpark loaded with four kegs apiece of standard big-box beers. The concession stand also offers four to five beer choices and the park has a selection of 30-plus types of canned beer.

The big one, though, is the Budweiser “Bow Tie” Bar. The center field bar features 11 brands and 30 taps.

The ballpark will introduce a new craft corner this year. Two beer portables will be housed under a tent with craft beers down the right field line. Local beers from North Carolina and South Carolina will be highlighted, including Columbia beer brands.

By opening game, the team will have its own ballpark beer – Luminescent Lager. Scott Burton, senior vice president of food and beverage, said the park partnered with River Rat Brewery to create the beer.

“It’s going to be our own brew, made specifically for us,” he said. “It’s a science behind it, and those guys ( at River Rat) do a great job. They put out great beer.”

The beer will be a traditional American lager, meaning not too hoppy or too high an alcohol by volume – essentially the perfect session beer for a long, hot baseball game.

For non-beer drinkers, another new option on the main course this year is the SnöBar frozen cocktail. Available in mojito, margarita and cosmopolitan flavors, a stop at SnöBar is like having an adult ice pop.

“I tried the mojito one, and there were actual mint leaves in it crushed up. It was very good,” said Burton. “I think it’ll be nice on some of these hot summer nights.”

On the suite level, the Maker’s 46 bar is fully stocked with just about any bourbon, gin, tequila or vodka you could think of. The ballpark used several spirits to create a specialty cocktail list, comprising drinks with names like the slugger, curve ball, the homer-ita, and of course, the Firefly.

“It’s citrus vodka, triple sec and Mountain Dew to give it that firefly glow,” Burton said.

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