You may be champing at the bit to fill out that all-elusive perfect bracket for the upcoming NCAA men's basketball tournament, but do you have what it takes to pick the final four for Patch's Munch Madness?
We're willing to bet it's more difficult than it sounds.
Munch Madness runs along the same lines as the much-hyped basketball tournament—except it uses St. Charles County restaurants instead of college basketball squads.
That's right, 64 restaurants all vying for top status in the county.
How do they advance, you ask? That's where you come in.
We're not egotistical enough to tell you what restaurants you do and don't like. That's why we're letting you decide which eateries take home Sweet 16, Elite Eight, Final Four and St. Charles County Champion honors.
And what type of bracket mania would this be without a prize at the end of the tunnel?
Print out the bracket—it's set to be unveiled this Sunday—and fill it out to your specifications and local expertise, and send it back to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The person with the most games guessed correctly will win a $50 gift certificate to the Final Four restaurant of their choosing! Each game is worth one point. In the event of a tie, a random bracket will be chosen.
Want to know more?
Here's how it works:
- The tournament begins March 13 with the championship matchup set for April 4.
- Restaurants will advance based on the number of votes they get on each Patch's website and their Facebook and Twitter accounts. The restaurant with the most votes at the end of the matchup will advance.
- Readers can vote by leaving a comment on the posted article for a given matchup. Twitter followers can vote by tagging a Patch's Twitter handle and adding their vote. And Facebook fans can vote by leaving a comment on the Facebook status that coordinates with the given matchup.
- One vote per user, Twitter follower and Facebook fan. If you follow us on all three platforms like you should, that's three votes!
- Voting periods will be as long as the round in which you are voting.
- Round 1 begins March 13 and ends March 20.
- Round 2 begins March 21 and ends March 25.
- The Sweet 16 round begins March 27 and ends March 28.
- The Elite Eight round ends March 29.
- The Final Four round begins March 30 and ends April 1.
- The St. Charles County Championship game will be on April 2.
- Matchups will be posted each day throughout each voting period.
- Ties in any matchups will be decided based on the last official vote recorded on the Patch website.
- Not all area restaurants made the cut, and where possible, local establishments were given preference. Feel free to tell us if you think a certain restaurant got snubbed.
In the meantime, here's a sample of what you will see when asked to vote:
FIRST ROUND MUNCH MADNESS MATCHUPS (REGION)
Restaurant 1 vs. Restaurant 2
Restaurant 1: A brief bio and explanation of what the establishment offers.
Restaurant 2: A brief bio and explanation of what the establishment offers.
Vote in the comments section below now!
Some rules and regulations:
- All entries must be received by 10 p.m. Friday, March 18.
- To determine the winner, we will take add up the total number of games guessed correctly. Each game is worth one point.
- If two or more people tie for the most points, a random drawing will be held to determine the winner of the gift card.
- Only one entry allowed per person. All participants must be 18 years or older.
- You can read our official giveaway .
So let the comments begin—and tell your friends.
Without seeing the bracket, which St. Charles County restaurant is your odds-on favorite to win the title?