From Thursday forward, Derek Stephens will forever sport the logo for the Benson Beer Fest on the inside of his left knee.
He paid $60 for a tattoo of the logo -- a frothy beer mug with the letters BBF printed across the front, approximately 2 inches by 1.5 inches. In exchange, he'll get free lifetime entry to the annual festival, which is Saturday this year.
"I'm spontaneous when it comes to tattoos," said Stephens, a heavily tattooed 25-year-old bartender at Beercade in Benson.
Both economics -- beer fest entry is $30 a year -- and novelty played a role in Stephens' decision. When festival organizers announced earlier this month that they would forever waive admission to anyone with the tattoo, he immediately knew he wanted one. And he knew that most people wouldn't share his reaction.
"I'd be lying if I didn't say this is for a little fame or notoriety," he said.
Ed Teply, a tattoo artist visiting from California, inked him Thursday afternoon at Sailor's Grave, a walk-in only tattoo parlor in Benson. The tattoo will be available at Sailor's Grave through the festival. As of Thursday afternoon, Stephens was the first person to pay for the logo.
Ryan Spangler, a tattoo artist at Sailor's Grave, appreciated Stephens' spontaneity.
"People search for too much meaning in every tattoo that they get," Spangler said.
There's nothing wrong with getting something just for fun, he said.
That was Stephens' attitude, too. He's not one to take tattoos too seriously -- the beer fest logo shares space on his leg with a tattoo of a Pabst Blue Ribbon can and a Miller can engaged in a boxing match.
"I'm not the kind of person to regret this, I'm sure," he said, "and I get to drink free beer."
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