Yesterday we had big plans: attend Harpoon Brewery’s Championship of New England BBQ Festival. Our friends Chris and Jenn of Howling Hog BBQ were competing. We missed this last year, so were were primed this year. (That link, incidentally, is for their Facebook page…their blog should be showing up on the blog roll at right…)
But first, a few random pictures:
This wood pile started off the summer as logs, primarily from a few trees we needed to remove last summer in the construction project. Kevin’s been going out several times each day, for anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour (depending on how hot it is), to manhandle ‘em. First he chainsawed them into short logs (“rounds”, for you non-woodstove afficionados), and more recently, he’s been splitting them into firewood. What a stud.
Moi. What you are supposed to be appreciating about this picture is my outfit. Is it not fab? I’ve had that jean jacket since I was 17. You can hardly tell, can you, just how awesome my sneakers are. Not to worry, this post will have more pictures.
OK, let’s get to the barbecue competition. It’s held in Windsor, a little more than an hour north of us, on the grounds of the Harpoon Brewery. It draws HUGE crowds for around here. I overheard event staff saying they had 5,000 people on Saturday. We knew that Chris and Jenn and their teammates would be crazy busy all day Saturday, preparing stuff for the judges, so we showed up yesterday, when we knew they’d be able to vend some of their tasty bbq goodness. Oh, and baked goodies, too.
That’s me, chewing on some of their delicious beef brisket, which earned them a 10th place ribbon (out of 40-odd competitors, I believe) this year.
Random crowd scene. Those clouds were scary, but it only rained a tiny bit.
Another random crowd scene. Nice trees, huh? Locusts, I believe. Somehow neither of these pictures shows the two things Jenn and I noticed most about the overall scene: one, the number of Very Pregnant Women. And two, the number of DOGS. SO many dogs. Lots and lots of dogs of all sizes and shapes.
Hey, there are my shoes. I’m sitting in front of Howling Hog’s tent. And I’m eating possibly the weirdest thing I’ve ever had. Bacon baclava. I’m not sure who made it. It wasn’t actually that good – instead of “yum! baclava! and is that bacon? wow!” it was more…”what is this…this is weird…I don’t feel good…”
Me and Jenn. Nice hair, Sarah. Actually, later on in the day, a complete stranger walked up to me and complimented me on my hair, so that kind of balances things out a bit. It’s hard to fully take credit for something like that – I mean, all I do is Not Cut It. If you want to look at fabulousness, though, look at Jenn, who’s one of my favoritest people ever. In addition to being a great cook, livestock guru, and community development pro, she’s also a talented potter. And she’s working on her black belt in karate. And I’m probably missing about five things you should know about Jenn.
That’s Chris, Jenn, and Wendy Boucher of Feeding Friendz, at the awards ceremony. Let’s show Chris a little lovin’ too – another one of my all-time favoritest peeps. Chris and I went to Antioch together (Antioch New England Graduate School, environmental science) – we started in the same semester. I remember sitting with him in his car in the school parking lot one day, listening to a CD of some outstanding blues guitarist, and it turns out it was Chris. Man, these multi-talented people I have as friends…I really need to get my game on.
Feeding Friendz, incidentally, completely cleaned up at the awards. They got four ribbons in a row yesterday, followed by some kind of ginormous Center of The BBQ Universe award, pictured below.
I believe that had I wanted to actually touch that trophy, I would have had to pay a dollar.
Well, that’s all I got for now.