At the end of a stressful day, happy hour feels like magic. Something special happens when coworkers transform into friends and work talk becomes real talk.
If you do it right, happy hours have a lot of perks – not just cheap drinks and discounted appetizers. Stretching back more than 100 years, the history of happy hour might surprise you!
Look back at the past and discover healthier alternatives for the future of happy hour with Harmonic.
Love the idea of chitchat and games during happy hour? Thank the U.S. Navy! In the early 1910s, sailors started planning ‘happy hour socials’ twice a week. These early evening parties were filled with music, movies, boxing, and the occasional slice of cake.
The trend caught on and spread to naval units across the Atlantic, even after alcohol was officially banned by the Navy in 1914. Happy hour was all about beating boredom and getting to know the crew, not getting drunk!
In 1920, Prohibition pushed happy hour underground. Alcohol was outlawed across the nation, but bootleggers knew how to reach the right audience. As it turns out, speakeasies often served drinks in the early evening — after work and before booze-free dinners. Sly drinkers borrowed the term ‘happy hour’ from sailors so that they could plan meetups and sip under the radar.
Social hour, specials hour, cocktail hour, happy hour… even lexicographers at Merriam-Webster aren’t quite sure how the phrase transformed into the current commercial context.
Sometime between 1950 and 1990, restaurants and bars saw the potential of drawing in guests after work. The timeline is murky, but happy hour trends are in full force: hop into any bar at 4:30 PM on a Thursday and you’ll probably find a happy hour special on the menu.
Well, not any bar. There are several US states where happy hour is banned! Alaska, Indiana, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Utah, and Vermont have banned happy hour in an effort to prevent binge drinking and drunk driving.
A Truly Happy Hour
How will this American tradition continue to evolve? Modern happy hour is really just a marketing gimmick to get customers in the door. Plus, it’s hard to know if social drinking will continue to decline as sober curious ideals take root and more sober spaces open to the public.
At Harmonic Woman CBD, we encourage you to take the best benefits of happy hour and create a new tradition that works for you.
Alcohol might help you tune out the stress of a long workday, but CBD beverages are the best way to tune into the present. Connect with colleagues, peers, and friends outside of the office with a casual meetup to unwind and de-stress.
CBD mocktails like Harmonic CBD Sparklers are a healthy drink alternative for happy hour. Zero alcohol, zero THC, and zero calories for zero guilt! We offer two light, fizzy CBD drinks with subtle, fresh flavors. Choose the Rise Uplifting CBD Sparkler with green tea caffeine to beat the late afternoon lull, or enjoy a Rose Relaxing CBD Sparkler to unwind for the evening.
With a CBD drink in hand, happy hour doesn’t have to happen at the bar. Sip full-spectrum CBD drinks anytime, anywhere. Your sober curious happy hour isn’t a buzzkill – it’s a healthier, happier way to skip the buzz!