Free Beer Entices Two Guys To Stay In Hurricane Florence’s Path

When going inland didn’t pan out, these friends opted for a less conventional method of weathering the storm; partying with all the free IPA they can drink.

Two men drink beer at a brewery
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When going inland didn’t pan out, these friends opted for a less conventional method of weathering the storm; partying with all the free IPA they can drink.

Most people living in the direct path of Hurricane Florence have evacuated. For two extremely fortunate men, however — getting stuck in Wilmington, North Carolina, comes with a lot of free beer.

Anthony Alston and Keem Grady were having a difficult time finding a place to stay inland. With the entire coastal region looking for a safer place to ride out the storm, it’s no wonder that hotels and shelters were unable to keep up with the demand. But even while facing a potentially dire situation, Alston and Grady were able to grab a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity — guarding a brewery in exchange for all the beer they can drink.

According to The Daily Beast, the two friends, one employee of the Front Street Brewery who will remain as well, can have their fill of the 11 beers on tap. There’s only one rule; they can’t help themselves to any of the brewery’s liquor.

The brick building that will temporarily house them dates back to 1865, so it has successfully survived many previous storms. In other words, these guys just might have the best hurricane plan of all time.

In anticipation of a power outage, the friends brought flashlights and batteries with them — along with pizza, air mattresses, and an Xbox. They’ve camped out in the upstairs dining portion of the brewery, to ensure that they’re most likely safe from flooding. Their sojourn within the brewery started on Wednesday night, and they passed most of the time playing video games.

Their temporary job isn’t just an excuse to drink a lot of beer, though. Keem Grady and Anthony Alston have been tasked with keeping a close eye on the brewery. This means watching for leaks and flooding, putting out buckets as needed, and reporting any issues to the owner. In exchange, they get to stay in a building that appears safer than their homes, and they’ll also get a nice cash payment in addition to lots of beer.

Even with 11 beers to choose from, Grady plans to stick with IPA. There’s been no word on Alston’s beer of choice.

According to USA Today, the brewery’s temporary caretakers are far from the only people failing to evacuate from the Wilmington area. Jon Wright, who worked as a firefighter for 42 years, has opted to stay. Wright said that he’s “not going to panic” and reasoned that “it is what it is. We live in a wonderful place, but that’s the cost of living here.”

Boarded up sign says hurricane party during hurricane florence
  Mark Wilson / Getty Images

After Hurricane Florence eventually passes, Grady and Alston will have a very important question to answer — how many beers did they manage to drink?