Rockin’ Bingo, Trivia, a Beer Garden and more…at Crafty Rooster in Conway, SC

Crafty Rooster is a beer garden/restaurant/sports bar in Conway, SC.  And one of my favorite establishments in Conway.  Crafty Rooster was a business concept and business plan created as a project for one of the business classes taken at neighboring Coastal Carolina University (CCU).  The men who dreamed the bar up on paper made it a reality years later in Conway.  It might be one of my favorite establishments because I love the origins of Crafty Rooster and because it roots itself in its beginning at CCU (CCU’s mascot is the Chanticleer – the proper name for a rooster in medieval stories…and known from Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales) or possibly because it seems to embrace the local community.

Beer Garden – Crafty Rooster began featuring craft beers weekly and allows you to join their Beer Club for free.  Kelly and I have both joined it and what you do is list each different pint of beer that you have sampled while you are there on your “score card.”  We have been official members for about seven months now.  There are milestones every 25 beers – up to 300 beers – where you can earn a gift certificate to Crafty Rooster, a pint glass, a t-shirt, a hoodie sweatshirt, and more.  The 25 beer increments also earn you a “degree” – earning up to a Ph.D. once you have sampled 300 different brews!  Your name goes on a plaque with your “graduating class” when you reach 100 different varieties.  Crafty Rooster introduces seasonal brews – Kelly really enjoyed the pumpkin varieites during the Fall – and local brews.  I enjoy this spirited way to introduce customers to different beers as I have discovered that different stouts and IPAs can be palatable (as I usually steer clear of those brews).  The waitstaff seems very knowledgeable about the beers they have and can suggest beers based on your personal flavor preferences.  On Thursdays you can try their feature brew of the week and take a souvenir pint glass home with you!

Restaurant & Sports Bar – Have you seen the movie, “Sweet Home Alabama?” There is a scene in this movie where Reese Witherspoon reunites with one of her high school friends in a bar in Alabama and her friend happens to have her baby balanced on her hip as if it is no big deal and Reese says, “Look at you, you have a baby…in a bar.”  I can’t help but quote this movie whenever I take my daughter (now six) into Crafty Rooster.  However, Crafty is just as much a restaurant as it is a bar.  When you walk in there are two elevated areas, one to your left and one to your right, where tables are available for sit down meals.  The bar is straight ahead at the back.  Crafty offers typical sports bar food: cheese fries, nachos, sandwiches and many varieties of burgers (they also have a Burger Club, which I imagine is very much the same as the Beer Club), and more.  They boast television sets in every corner and around the room so you can enjoy your game of choice on any given channel.  Crafty offers darts and various activities throughout the week.   Kelly and I decided to try out their Trivia and Rockin’ Bingo.

Trivia – Kelly and I attended Trivia night when we first joined the Beer Club (and added a beer to our Beer Club list).  We invited a few friends and met them about 15 minutes before the start time.  Luckily our friends had a table as they had taken the opportunity to eat at Crafty before the Trivia event kicked off, because there was standing room only!  The entire establishment is taken over for this event.  There is a guy in charge who asks a question (via microphone) that might have to do with history, geography, the tune of a song played over the speakers, or a general knowledge question, etc.  No cell phone assistance is allowed.  You pick a team name and there is a set amount of time where you can discuss the question with your team (there is no minimum or maximum amount of people on your team) while the bar plays their regular tunes on the jukebox.  You write your answer down on a piece of paper and walk it up to the announcer.  Once all answers have been submitted the announcer gives the right answer and you and he keep score as to if you turned in the right answer or not.  Each round has different points associated with each question and you can assign the amount of points to each question (it sounds confusing at first but you get the hang of it quickly – the directions are given to you and explained in the beginning).  We find it’s best to have a team made up of random people who can contribute answers for the different categories.  We didn’t win.  But we laughed a lot at our creative answers and had a ton of fun.  Not only does the winning team typically get a $25 gift certificate to Crafty Rooster, the team coming in last place gets a $5 gift certificate to Crafty as a condolence prize.

Rockin’ Bingo – Kelly had been to Rockin’ Bingo before and suggested I try it with her this past week.  We met about 15 mintues before the start time and found a table easily.  The entire establishment is taken over for this event as well.  We each got six bingo cards and a crayon (and ordered a beer to add to our Beer Club list).  The bingo cards have names of bands, artists, songs, television shows or movies on each square.  The guy in charge plays a string of songs over the sound system for 45 seconds each, and if you recognize it you cross it off on your bingo card.  No cell phone assistance is allowed.  Once you believe you have five boxes in a row (just like regular bingo) you take your card up to him to verify that all the songs/artists/bands etc. that you crossed off were indeed played in that round.  Once someone has bingo we moved on to the next round.  The rounds included the ’70s, one-hit-wonders, the Vitamin String Quartet (a string quartet that performs covers of popular songs), Disney songs, and TV themes.  The winner of each round received a $5 gift certificate to Crafty.  Kelly and I joined forces with three other bingo players who are Rockin’ Bingo regulars and were sitting at the table next to us.  It helped having all five of our musical knowledge as we tried to fill out our cards by piecing together song titles and artists during 45 second song clips.  It was a blast!  Kelly even won one of the rounds!

Crafty Rooster also hosts Customer Appreciation events throughout the year where they offer free food all day.  The waitstaff seems to be different every time we go in there and I can’t call myself a regular (as my beer card isn’t even up to 25 different beers yet) but it definitely has the air of a hometown bar “where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.”

Cost: Events are free to participate in.  Happy hour prices for food and drinks apply and regular meal prices apply.