Opening the night was Old Lights, who never give anything less than a great performance. It was strange to see bands I typically enjoy in smaller bars and venues on such a giant stage. But both Old Lights and Bunnygrunt treated it as though this is the platform they belong on (and they most certainly do).
Just before the Bottle Rockets took to the stage, Schlafly co-founder Tom Schlafly said thanks and announced what he never thought he would, that Schlafly is now the largest American-owned brewery in St. Louis.
The Bottle Rockets are like Lynyrd Skynyrd's more articulate cousin. They're the right mix of grit and charming country, and they encompassed what the night was all about: A good old-fashioned reason for a lot of us to get out and revel in what we love, beer and rock 'n' roll.
All photos by Kelsey McClure.