Coors’ beer may be ubiquitous in gas stations and groceries stores across the country today, but in the 1970s, it was a hot commodity unavailable east of the Mississippi River. And a quest to bootleg 400 cases from Texarkana, Texas, to Atlanta in the movie “Smokey and the Bandit” catapulted the legacy brand to a cultural phenomenon.
Now, a hotel in Coors’ home of Golden is paying tribute to the film – and the brewery’s 150th anniversary – with a themed lodging package that offers guests a chance to pose with a car inspired by its famous Trans Am and, of course, plentiful beer.
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Movie buffs can book a reservation at The Eddy Taproom & Hotel (1640 8th St, Golden), for a curated experience that is sure to satisfy fans who are “eastbound and down, loaded up and truckin’.” The package, which starts at $900 for two people, includes a trip to the Rods & Bodz Museum, which showcases many cars made famous on the silver screen; a guided brewery tour in Golden; a three-course dinner and pairing led by the hotel’s Cicerone; and a life-size cut out of Burt Reynolds that guests can keep in their room.
Guests also get a six-pack of craft beer upon arrival and a Coors Banquet gift package.
“We’re excited to offer guests the opportunity to celebrate our town’s brewing history and to relive the thrill of Smokey and the Bandit,” said Chris Luersen, general manager of The Eddy Taproom & Hotel, in a statement.
“Golden is not only the home of Coors but also a vibrant hub of craft brewing, distilling and outdoor adventure. This package allows visitors to experience the town’s exciting culture while also enjoying a unique blend of nostalgia and modern luxury,” he added.
“Smokey and the Bandit,” starring Reynolds, Sally Field and Jerry Reed and Jackie Gleason, was released in 1977 — the same year that Coors grew into the 5th largest brewery in the United States. Despite its size, however, Coors still only distributed beer in 11 Western states (as it had done since the end of Prohibition), including Texas.
That distribution was one of the major plot points in the movie: A wealthy Texan wanted to drink his favorite beer at a car race in Atlanta, but since it wasn’t sold legally there, he hires truck driver Cledus “Snowman” Snow (Reed) to transport it across the country (at speeds exceeding the speed limit), with Bo “Bandit” Darville (Reynolds) and his Trans-Am acting as a distraction for the police. The film was a huge hit — and it made Coors into a highly sought-after star.
The brewery would eventually begin selling beer on the other side of the Mississippi River in 1981 and was distributed in all 50 states by 1991.
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