I'm going to spare you the speech about just being lucky or hitting the right tables, even if those two things are probably both true. I'm also not going to tell you that we didn't cook as well as we wanted, because we almost never do and I say it often. But, I am going to say that it was awesome to win in my home town. The Wheatstock Grill-Off, Peace, Love & BBQ at the Second annual Flour Power Family Fun Fest was about the only game in town, so there was a ton of top notch talent. I had been uneasy about the event since setting my sights on getting ready back the Tuesday before. Then, one after another, things began to happen last week that made just getting to the event difficult, let alone concentrating on cooking and being competitive in a field that included five of the top ten teams in the nation from '08 plus several teams who have been pouring it on strong thus far in '09. Add cooking back where I grew up, with darn near my entire family there, and the pressure for this smaller, otherwise lower profile event felt enormous. Luckily for use, the two Cookshack FEC-100's fueled by the BBQr's Delight hickory blend pellets were up to the task.
It's always easy for the winner to tell everyone about how great the event was. However, this really was a hidden gem. Tons of space, all the power you want, free ice, plenty of volunteers, all of whom were extremely friendly, things to do including bands, a car show and vendors, all made this a barbecue contest I'm proud to have in my home town. On Friday, we offered to help the contest organizer keep the contest going in Abilene. I hope she took me seriously. Not that it won't happen without us, but I'd love to see this event grow and flourish.
The pictures include Twin Oak Smokin' Crews latest Horizon pit, and the stack on the homemade smoker used by our neighbors, the Smokey Hill Brothers. It's the manifold from a '90 Toyota truck. Also, pictures of just a small part of the car show and a '67 Voltswagon Bettle that won Best Other. My picture does not due the little bug justice. I absolutely fell in love with the color of the car, even talking to the car's owner about it. Someday I'd love to have a pit painted that color. Don't hold your breath though, the owner expressed just how expensive the paint and the overall finish process was, surely making it prohibitive for a long, long time. Hey, a guy can dream, can't he?