Friday, July 30–Crew Sets World Pub Crawl Record In OC

OCEAN CITY – With a last
beer at the last stop of a grueling 16-plus hour tour of Ocean City’s famous
and not-so-famous watering holes, a weary group of nine friends from all over
the country early last Friday morning successfully completed a trek into the
Guinness Book of World Records for the most pubs visited by a team in 24 hours.

The nine-member team,
from as far away as Seattle, Wash. and Portland, Ore., had its first beer
around 9:30 a.m. last Thursday over breakfast at the Ocean View Grill and BBQ
in the Quality Inn on the Boardwalk at 16th Street. A little over 16
hours later, around 1 a.m., the group finished its last beer of the tour at the
Sandbar on 32nd Street, completing a journey into the Guinness Book
that took them from the Inlet to the Delaware line and practically everywhere
in between.

The final beer at the
Sandbar marked the 102nd stop on the trip, setting a new Guinness
Book record for the most pubs visited by a team in a 24-hour period. The
previous record of 101 was set in Seattle last October, and judging by the
interest generated in the record-breaking attempt late last week, the new mark
of 102 could be challenged soon, perhaps in the same town where the bar, no pun
intended, was set.

“By Friday morning, when
we were all packing up and getting ready to head off in our different
directions, already we heard people calling into the radio talk shows in town
about how they can beat the record,” said John Egan, who organized and
documented last week’s record-breaker. “We had just set the record hours
earlier, and already there was talk about taking it down. We’re just going to
have to come back and raise the ante.”

At the outset, Egan and
his crew believed the record attempt would be more of physical stamina and
logistics than alcohol tolerance and that proved to be the case. Although more
than a couple of team members were a little fuzzy near the end, the physical
demands of the 16-hour tour took its toll on the record-setters, according to

“The hardest part toward
the end was just getting from one spot to the next,” he said. “By the end, two
of the team members had trouble walking, and we found fewer and fewer places
still open.”

According to the
specific Guinness Book rules, the team had to rely on public transportation or
travel to the various establishments on foot, which was not a problem in the
early going. After the first stop at the Quality Inn on 16th Street,
the team headed south on the Boardwalk and looped around the south end of town
before heading back up the Boardwalk.

“We were able to knock
out a good bit of it in the first couple of hours because of the close
proximity of the bars and restaurants,” said Egan this week. “We went down the
Boardwalk and hit the places that were open already, then we swung around to
some of those downtown bars and headed back up the Boardwalk to pick up the
ones that weren’t open on the way down. A lot of the places were cool because,
even if they weren’t open yet, when we explained what we were doing, they let
us come in for a quick one to cross them off.”

After moving through the
downtown area on foot, the team had to rely more on the Ocean City bus system
for the rest of the record-breaking attempt.

“After the downtown
area, we looked for areas where spots were clustered and got off the bus in
areas where we knew we could hit five or six in a short amount of time,” he
said. “We did that for the rest of the day as we went all the way up to the
Delaware line and started heading back down again.”

From the beginning, the
team did not seem overly concerned about the amount of alcohol that would have
to consume along the way. According to the Guinness Book rules for the record,
one member of the team had to have at least one drink at each venue. According
to the rules, the definition of a drink was at least a quarter of a pint, or
125 milliliters, roughly 4.4 ounces.

At that rate, in order
to set the 102 mark for pubs visited in a 24-hour period, each team member
would have had to consume an average of 11 drinks and a few would have to have
12 over the 16-plus hours it took to accomplish the feat. However, Egan said it
never really came down to who had what or how much to drink.

“In the beginning, we
were following a rotation about who was up next, but after a while, it came
down to ‘who wants this one?’” said Egan. “I don’t think there was ever a time
when somebody on the team wanted to be skipped.”

Of course, one of the
biggest challenges was keeping everybody focused on the task at hand.

“At one point, one of
the guys ordered a bunch of sushi and we had to wait awhile for it,” said Egan.
“Those kind of things happened throughout the day. We had some team members
that wanted to wander off at a couple of points during the day.”

Egan said he is in the
process of putting together the strict documentation required by the Guinness
Book, including his log of the places visited complete with signatures,
pictures and video evidence, which he will submit in about a week. After that,
Guinness Book officials will review the documentation to determine if the
record is valid, a process that could take several weeks.