Kendall’s Column: The Enigma of Kelly’s Mug Night

Kendall Hayes, Columnist

Disclaimer: Only patrons above the age of 21 can purchase Kelly’s Taproom mugs.

Two weeks ago today, I walked in my pajamas down County Line Road, ready to go to Kelly’s Bar and Taproom. I was not in the mood to go out that night, but I was on a mission: a mission to secure my mug. Mug Night season had begun, and I was ready. 

I was not alone in this venture at 9:15 p.m. on a Wednesday night. It was almost comical looking around and seeing other over 21 Villanova students doing the same exact thing: heading to Kelly’s at a ridiculously early hour (in terms of going out) to make sure they would not be left behind in the adventures of Mug Night. 

For the owners of Kelly’s Bar and Taproom, it all started last year with the intention of creating a slow night at Kelly’s, a night where Villanova students weren’t standing body-to-body trying to get a vodka soda. Oh, how that is no longer the case. Mug Night is now one of the most crowded nights of the week. Mug Night creates an exclusive night at Kelly’s, when only the most committed Kelly’s goers get to experience a night out on the Bryn Mawr town. Riveting. 

The experience does come at a price. To become a part of Mug Night, one must be willing to pay $40 in cash. From afar, this may seem steep, but for the people dedicated to the cause, Mug Night is worth it. Not only are people buying a great souvenir and getting half-off drinks that night, but they are also buying their membership to “Kelly’s Members Only Mug Night.” 

I asked one of Mug Night’s biggest fans, Mia D, about why Mug Night is her favorite night, and probably day, of the week. 

“$4.50 Vodka Sodas, on lock,” she said.

The owners of Kelly’s have had to endure complaint after complaint about the exclusivity of the night and why they won’t just order more mugs. 

I talked to one of Kelly’s owners to try and understand the idea behind the exclusivity of Mug Night. 

“To be exclusive, you can’t just completely offer mugs all the time,” they said. “It’s something where there is a method. We ordered our mugs months ago and we are almost out. So, it is going to be pretty exclusive here soon. It’s really to kind of make it so that mugs aren’t always available, because then you lose the lure of the exclusivity of it all.” 

I asked the owner how many mugs originally were ordered and how many are now left. 

“We like to keep that a secret,” the owner said. “Don’t ask what number we are at. Just act like it’s the last one.”

So, there you have it. If I were you, I would stop what you are doing and run to Kelly’s, because who knows? The mug you buy may very well be the last one of the season, and you don’t want to miss out on the acclaimed Mug Night.