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10 Year Pub Crawl

Tough Guy Book Club was born on a pub crawl through Brunswick, Victoria in August 2013, we reckoned the best way to celebrate the club turning 10 would be for each chapter of TBGC hold a pub crawl through their town – so that’s exactly what we did. 

Throughout the month of August there were rambunctious, lively, well-read pub crawls all over Australia and the world. An incredible array of venues received the TGBC treatment including cool unmarked bars in New York City, back street breweries in industrial suburbs, RSL clubs, neighbourhood taverns, and landmark hotels. Some started the night at their own chapter venue and stumbled on from there, some went further afield and checked out somewhere new. All did an amazing job getting excited goons together for some fun outside of regular club night.

This club is far reaching and varied, which means that some chapters are in small towns where the only pub is the very place they meet each month, some might consider this an impossible task, but we are a versatile group. “It doesn’t have to be a pub,” advised maiden crawl veteran Shay Leighton, “the original rules were to stop anywhere that serves alcohol.” So, some creativity was employed and bottle shops, restaurants, parks, licenced cafes, and even backyard sheds were filled with merriment in celebration when required. By all accounts some of the sheds around Briagolong outstrip most pubs anyway. Transport was varied too, with trams, trains, and bicycles utilised in addition to the traditional foot path.

5 was the recommended minimum venue count, and most did around this number, but some pushed the limits – Wollongong hitting up 12! Ambitious chapters aimed for the distance record and spread their crawl along country train lines, while others aimed for the minimum distance between stops – barely leaving a single city block – Portland, Oregon took in 5 breweries within a 1-mile loop, because… Portland. Chapters located close enough took the opportunity to combine and catch up with a wider group of goons, and also threw in a little symbolism. Newcastle chapter is about to split to Newcastle East and so crawled from the original pub across town to the new.  Melbourne’s inner west Werribee line crawl covered seven venues across the Point Cook, Williamstown, Yarraville, and Footscray territories – including a nostalgic pint at the original Footscray pub, The Mona Castle. Organiser JB said, “Visiting the OG Footscray venue was special, we had 4 OG Footscray goons at the Mona.”

We owe a huge shout out to all the goons who were involved in each event, from the organisers to the attendees – everyone helped make the 10-year celebration fitting of the club. An extra cheers to all those who attended multiple crawls, some even on the same day! Nick made it along to 4 separate crawls, “I’ve met so many great goons across so many chapters over the years,” he reasoned, “I couldn’t pick just one!”

Happy Birthday Tough Guy Book Club. And thank you to the original pub crawlers of 2013 who started it all.

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