Two-up is an ANZAC Day tradition.
Following dawn service, hundreds of thousands of Australians head to the local pub or RSL in search of a cold pint and an opportunity to share stories with their mates and diggers.
But there’s another reason Aussies love to visit the pub on ANZAC Day: two-up.
Two-up is a traditional Australian gambling game involving a designated “spinner” throwing two or three coins into the air to land inside a marked ring. Punters, standing outside the ring, then gamble whether the result will be heads or tails.
April 25 is the only day in the calendar year when this type of gambling is legally acceptable — unless you live in Broken Hill or Kalgoorlie where two-up is permitted all year round.
To help you celebrate the centenary we’ve listed some of the best venues to play or watch two-up this ANZAC Day.
Here they are.
The Light Brigade Hotel, Paddington-Woollahra.
Toast the diggers during happy hour between 10am-12pm and enjoy two-up from 12pm.
The Light Brigade hosts one of the most exciting two-up arenas in Sydney’s eastern suburbs. They’ll also be playing all the ANZAC Day football games (League, Union and AFL) on multiple screens throughout the pub.
Dick’s Hotel and The Exchange Hotel, Balmain.
Every year the two pubs combine forces and close off the adjoining Beattie Street for ANZAC day to erect the suburbs biggest two-up arena. People can venture between the two venues and the atmosphere is electrifying.
The Chalk Hotel, Woolloongabba.
Two-up kicks off from 1pm and runs until late. This ring is so huge (they claim it’s the biggest in the city) they put it in the pub’s carpark. There’s also live music from 4pm.
The Shafston Hotel, East Brisbane.
Get down early for the annual “Tinnies and Two Up Laneway Party” featuring a massive outdoor two-up arena, gourmet food trucks, an array of craft and classic tinnies — and freshly made tinnie can cocktails — complimented by some of Brisbane’s hottest local musical acts. Free entry from 11am till late.
Prahran RSL, Prahran.
This is one of the oldest memorial halls in Australia. Cheap beer and big crowds are always guaranteed. And if you want to pay your respects to the fallen soldiers, the newly erected City of Stonnington war memorial is located nearby.
The Palace Hotel, South Melbourne.
Two-up and ANZAC celebrations kick off early and while there’s plenty of great pub food available, it’s the incredibly extensive list of craft beers that draws punters to this popular watering hole. Check out the full list here.
Canberra Irish Club, Weston.
The Irish Club has all your favourite beers on tap and the first coin toss is thrown at 1pm. If you’re after a hearty meal following the dawn service, there’s breakfast served from 7am.
The Palace Hotel, Broken Hill.
Broken Hill’s association with two-up is unique in the Australian story. The City Council successfully applied for a permit to run the game any day of the year in 1984. Head down for a game from 11:30am this Saturday and enjoy the famous ANZAC buffet lunch from 1:30pm.
Brunswick Hotel, Hobart.
To commemorate ANZAC Day, there’s usually a traditional Aussie barbecue serving up snags and other treats. There’s live music and the AFL will be broadcast. In past years the bar staff have served longnecks of Victoria Bitter to thirsty patrons. Oh, and there’ll be two-up too!
Crown Perth Casino, Burswood.
The quintessential game runs at the casino all year round, however, on ANZAC Day part of the proceeds go back into the local community, specifically RSL WA branch.
Cazalys Palmerston Club.
There’s two-up from 1pm-5pm, drink specials all day, an all you can eat buffet and defence members discounts. The Club is also waiving its regular membership fees in lieu of a gold donation to Legacy. Awesome!
Semaphore Port Adelaide RSL, Port Adelaide.
They play it traditionally down here – two coins only, so there’s not always a result but still plenty of fun. There’s also cash up for grabs in the annual ANZAC Day raffle. For the kids there’s the youth vigile sound and vision show, a gun fire salute and piper brass band.
Torrens Parade Ground, North Adelaide
Two-up will be played in the heritage-listed Drill Hall, commencing around lunchtime. The venue is located south of the river and will be hosted by local RSL members.
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