Alaska’s long, dark winter nights are notorious, with some northern cities without daylight for weeks in midwinter. But what about the long, sunny Alaskan summer days?
This week, a TikToker in Alaska is going viral for revealing what it’s like to hit the bars in Anchorage in the summer. In a TikTok titled “Bars in Alaska at 11pm,” @jennababyy.1 shows people drinking and hanging out in broad daylight, causing shock and intrigue to commenters living closer to the equator.
@jennababyy.1 11pm bar hopping in Alaska🙃 #alaskalife #anchorage #fyp ♬ Sweet Giirrrllll face beat x Father Philis – Phil
Anchorage is on the south coast of Alaska, actually below the Arctic Circle. However, there is still 24 hours of daylight in the summer months, with the sun only briefly dipping below the horizon in June. This unusual cycle inevitably impacts Alaskan culture, as people often stay up much later because of what feels like broad daylight into late “night.”
With clear blue skies and bright sunlight at 11pm, @jennababyy.1’s TikTok went viral with 5.3 million views in four days, with non-Alaskans wondering how the midnight sun is affecting drinking culture. “You’re telling me I might be plastered when I come out of a club and people might see me in broad daylight?” is one of the top replies.
“Imagine not knowing when to go home because it’s always light and you’ve been drinking for days,” wrote another. This was one of the most common types of responses as commenters predicted that if it didn’t get dark they would just stay out all night.
Others wondered how the 24-hour working day was affecting Alaskan sleep patterns, a common question living this far north. Many Alaskans (and people living in Scandinavia and northern Russia) use blackout drapes or eye masks to sleep in the summer and sunlamps to recharge their circadian rhythms in the winter. Not surprisingly, some find the long winters a brutal experience. But humans are adaptable, and going out to bars in broad daylight at 11pm is basically just a quirky cultural difference, not a huge lifestyle change.
Just don’t think too much about whether this officially counts as daytime drinking. This debate could go on forever.
The Daily Dot reached out to @jennababyy.1 via TikTok comment.
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*Initial publication: June 7, 2022 at 7:02 am CDT
Gavia Baker-Whitelaw is a staff writer at the Daily Dot, covering geek culture and fandom. Specializing in science fiction films and superheroes, she also appears as a film and television critic on BBC radio. Elsewhere, she is the co-host of the pop culture podcast Overinvested. Follow her on Twitter: @Hello_Tailor
https://www.dailydot.com/unclick/alaska-bars-at-11/ TikToker shows what bars in Alaska look like at 11 p.m