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The Legend of the Running Gorillas

Once upon a time in a sleepy Southern town, a group of eclectic runners began to congregate at a local mall on Sunday mornings. The initial group consisted of Ale Rat, The Living Legend, Bud-Man, The Missing Link and The Gamecock. The group believed that Exercise could be fun, particularly if beer drinking was involved.

After the Great Father’s Day Debacle of 2001, Ale Rat, the self-proclaimed leader of the pack, established the Three-Beer Rule. Essentially, membership into the group required a weekly three-beer contribution to participate. Doc and Little Annie
joined the group shortly after the Great Debacle.

The group would proceed to do a 6.7 mile run through the streets of the city, often having to dodge wayward drivers speeding to get their destinations. After surviving the run and the often-rude drivers, the group would relax in the mall parking lot and re-nourish with the weekly beer offerings.

The group slowly grew with the fine additions of The Princess, Queen KP, The Warrior, Cyco Jeff and The Spaniard.

Ale Rat’s mission was to bring as many converts to the “dark-side” of running, and he was slowing making progress with his task. The group motto slowly morphed into its current slogan “Drinkers with a Running Problem.”

In 2003 the Sunday beer consumption took a dramatic change in its offerings. As The Living Legend was turning 65, he decided he would drink 65 different beers beginning 65 days before his birthday. Doc and Queen KP traveled west and came upon a gold mine of micro-brews at a huge alcohol warehouse known as Spec’s. With the several cases of exotic micro-brews, the group was able to help Living Legend accomplish his goal.

With time other members would return from their travels with new beers, and over time the group had managed to taste over 500 different beers (forget about 99 bottles of beer on the wall). At about this time, the group began to dabble in the idea of being loosely organized as the Running Gorillas.

The group did suffer a slight blow to its beer offerings when the airline industry forbade passengers from carrying liquids on planes.

We lost The Warrior in the modern day crusade in Iraq.

Little Annie, Ale Rat, The Spaniard and Doc migrated away, but Doc has returned to the fold.

After Doc and Ale Rat had left, the group suffered a major set back at the hands of oppressive authoritarians (The Po-Po Man), who informed the remaining members that they could no longer congregate at the local mall. After seven years of blissful peace in the shade of tall pine trees, the Running Gorillas were forced to find a new habitat.

Fortunately, Bud-Man had broken ranks from his employer and ventured out on his own. The Running Gorillas have now migrated to a metal warehouse tucked deeply in a small cul-de-sac, well away from the scrutiny of The Po-Po Man. With the return of Doc, the troupe now has a core group of six gorillas – The Living Legend, The Missing Link, Bud-Man, The Gamecock, Psycho Jeff and Doc.

For more than ten years, the Running Gorillas have met weekly for a six-mile run and a post-run Beer Summit. We have sampled over 500 beers. And the Thirsty Quest continues…

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