In the 1920s, Happy Hour happened on board a ship. It was the hour when boxing and wrestling mathces took place - an hour to unwind and cut loose from the day's regular activities. Boy have we come a long way since then! I was recently up in Portland, OR, where Happy Hour can be as many as 7 hours long, lasting well into the night. These kinds of Happy Hours are really just excuses to market a different menu featuring food at cheaper prices. In fact, many people in Portland that I spoke to actually feel that the term Happy Hour has come to by synonymous with "cheaper food."
Here in Los Angeles, and also in NYC where I used to live, Happy Hour is typically between 5 and 7 and, yes, has also become an excuse to lure people in with softer pricing before the big dinner rush. It's almost like the phrase "early bird special" has been replaced with "Happy Hour." How about some feedback from you all? What's Happy Hour mean where you live and what's the longest Happy Hour you've ever seen at an establishment? Leave your interesting stories in the comments below. Maybe we'll get a coffee table book out of them, or something.