Dark Horse Brewery 4 Elf Party 2016

by | Dec 14, 2016 | Beer, Michigan, Music

The 2016 Dark Horse Brewery 4 Elf Party did not disappoint. Like their Bourbon Barrel Plead the 5th Imperial Stout, the party just gets finer and finer. This year the elves were thick as thieves and drinking beer like it was 1999. Add to that a pink bunny, Jesus, exotic food and 5 excellent Michigan Bands and you’ve got yourself a bash. 

4 Elf Party 2016

Jesus greeted us at the door and promised Dark Horse Beer. He said, “Just follow me!” Hell, who wouldn’t follow? 

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Elf Favorites 

Like I said, elves were everywhere! I’m sure the Best Elf Contest was responsible for the large turnout of elves. While everyone was drinking their favorite Dark Horse beer, secret judges were canvassing the crowd to choose 10 of the best dressed elves. Unfortunately, Chuck and I missed the final selection at 9:15. Blame it on Trent. Since we don’t have pictures of the winners, here are a few elves we’d like to mention. (If you we’ve got pictures of the winners, send them to us and we will include in the post.) 

Best Elf Contest Prizes:
3rd Place DH logo Pint glass & key chain
2nd Place: DH logo T-shirt
1ST PLACE: Best Elf 2016 Crown, 2: 4 packs of BBA Plead the 5th and $100 dollars CASH!

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Pink Bunny

I just loved the pink bunny. I had a hard time keeping my hands to myself. 

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Lets Get Lit

Not the primary goal of the party, but it does happen. 

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Fire Pit 

The beer garden provided a lovely sanctuary for those who wished to enjoy a fire with their beer. 

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Knights of the Drinking Templar

Yes, it really is a thing. Cowboy Doug introduced us. Life really hasn’t been the same since. In June 2015, we attended a Rock Paper Scissors Tournament (yes, we really did) and learned about the drinking knights. A few of the nights were at 4 Elf. (And no, this didn’t concern me.) 

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4 Elf Party Music

I would dare to say that as much as I look forward to all the tasty beers and seeing my wonderful beer family during the 4 Elf party at Dark Horse; I look forward to the music. As in years past, Dark Horse did not disappoint. They covered the bases with Americana tinged with outlaw country, cover bands tapping into punk and hair metal, low-down gritty blues, and sweaty rock with attitude.

Heathen Daniels Band

Heathen Daniels got the 4 Elf crowd fired up with their brand of Americana meets Outlaw country. You have to be confident in your music when you are playing all originals at a party. Folks have a tendency to want to hear music they know. Heathen Daniels was up front and told the crowd they were playing their own tunes and hoped everyone would enjoy. From the reaction within the tent full of Dark Horse beer lovers, they were a hit. Gritty vocals and some whiskey fueled guitar added a kick in the pants to the party atmosphere. This young crew from Kalamazoo (like how that rolls of the tongue?) have a new EP out called ‘Lighthing in a Bottle’. Check it out and give them a listen. For more pictures of the band, stop by the gallery.

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Next up was the Misfits tribute band, Devilock. The crowd enjoyed the band’s Chris-Misfits entertainment of rapid-fire punk with all its beautiful insanity. I had expected to see more people moshing. I’m not sure if folks were in shock or just not quite lubed up enough. Devilock delivered the raw intensity and energetic release that you want from a good punk band. They were fun as hell and went perfect with a few pints of Crooked Tree. Drop into the gallery for more pictures of the band.

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Tino G

Bringing in some dirty boogie and blues music was the legendary Tino G. You may know Tino as the lead vocalist for Detroit’s Howling Diablos. Tino got the crowd moving to gritty blues from the masters such as John Lee Hooker and Bo Diddley. Tino was joined by guitarist Mike Smith who played some fiery slide guitar on his sweet tobacco burst 1955 Les Paul Junior. There were plenty of hips moving as the 4 Elf crowd juked and jived. Be sure to check out Tino’s label, Funky D Records. You can see a few more pictures of Tino G in the gallery.

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Risky Brenda

If you have been following Life In Michigan for the past couple of years, you know that we have been fans of Risky Brenda since we first saw them at the Pleasant Lake Inn in 2014. Since that time, the band has fermented and aged like a dusky keg of barrel-aged Plead The Fifth, creating music that flows across the tongue and warms the belly.

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The 4 Elf party was in full swing when Risky Brenda took to the stage and they drew in the crowd like moths to the flame with their unique brand of rock. They put on a magnetic show with each member of the band making a connection with the audience. Their Doors meets the Pixies sound fit right at home with the no-nonsense audience at 4 Elf. In a world full of pretenders, it is refreshing to hear a band make original music that digs under your skin and makes you want more. Swing by the gallery for more pictures.

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For the next hour, the 4 Elf party was transported back to the glory days of hair metal by the fantastic tribute band, Glamhammer. This Lansing band kicked things off with Van Halen’s “Panama” and never looked back. As their name would indicate, the band hit hard with tunes from Motley Crue, Poison, and Skid Row.

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They even broke out a killer cover of “Crazy Train” by Ozzy and a fun bopping cover of “Dancing with Myself” by Billy Idol. These talented musicians played each song to perfection and put the Dark Horse 4 Elf party into overdrive. Check out the gallery for more pictures of Glamhammer.

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Exotic Food

I heard via Facebook the food was excellent. Dark Horse goes out of their way to make it unique and interesting.

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Beer Slingers 

If you get an opportunity to volunteer to pour beer at a Dark Horse event, DO IT. Why? Number 1 it is a ton of fun. Number 2 you can fill your glass when no one is looking. Number 3 you can hang out with the Dark Horse Peeps. 

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I wish I was creative enough to figure out how to include all 160 of the photos from our gallery. Alas, I’m not, so check out the rest of the pictures in our gallery. We’d love it if you’d share the pictures, but please give us photo credit and don’t remove our watermark. 

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