Dodge City Days BBQ

This weekend we attended another competition that was our first time at that event. This time it was at the Dodge City Days BBQ in Dodge City, KS. Dodge City Days is an annual celebration that includes street dances, concerts, a rodeo, and several other events. The competition was held in Wright Park which is about four blocks south of Dodge City’s famous Front Street. The park was closed off for the contest so cookers were set up on the streets as well as in the grassy areas. There was also areas set aside where National Beef and other sponsors were going to feed the public. We had a good spot less than a minute’s walk from the turn-in door, on grass with some shade, and close to one of the many electrical boxes that had been installed in the park.
Once we were set up and the meat was prepped, our first order of business was to meet our friend Del of Doc K’s BBQ for a Sarsaparilla at the Long Branch Saloon.

Del, Greg & Kristi at the Long Branch Saloon

Del, Greg & Kristi at the Long Branch Saloon

The bartender gave us a history of the saloon and some of the artifacts that were there, for example to two Golden Eagles above the bar were over 100 years old! She also sat with us and visited a few minutes and told us her brother enjoyed smoking food and she had always enjoyed eating his efforts. Unfortunately he had passed away so now she is trying to learn how to smoke and had just done her first pork butt.
Saturday morning the organizers had a Chuckwagon breakfast for the cooks. Now, I can’t vouch for how much of the breakfast these guys actually cooked, but they did look authentic and it was a fun experience.

Chuckwagon breakfast at Dodge City Days

Chuckwagon breakfast at Dodge City Days

The Dodge City contest is unique in that it has a 5th KCBS category for sirloin roast. I was told it was a regular category years ago but had been dropped from most contests. Dodge had been grandfathered in and is the only contest keeping that category alive. We had never cooked a sirloin roast before, and it showed in our scores :( We did get calls for 4th in chicken and 7th in brisket but the judges didn’t like our other entries. Overall we were 23rd out of 47 teams.
After results were announced we moved the trailer to a RV park, showered and went back in to town for supper and then off to the Roundup Rodeo Arena for the Gloriana concert. I was somewhat amused to see the guys parking cars on horseback, but it made perfect sense in that venue. We had seen Gloriana in Vegas last year, we enjoy their music and looked forward to seeing them again. Now I will admit that my primary reason for going was to watch Rachel. You’ll have to admit, she is a cutie. However by the time the show was over the one I enjoyed watching the most was Mike on lead guitar. While the others put on a good show, I thought they looked like they were at work. On the other hand, Mike was all over that stage and looked like he was having the time of his life.

Rachel

Rachel

Mike

Mike

Tom

Tom

On the way home we stopped at Mullinville. There is a display of metal sculptures on the west edge of town that includes hundreds of sculptures. No doubt the guy has some talent and imagination and a large amount of opinion. Some of his creations were pretty cool, others were, well, I’m not sure what to make of them.

Metal sculptures at Mullinville, KS

Metal sculptures at Mullinville, KS

We also took a little trip through Greensburg. I had not been there since I helped with security in the days after the town was nearly obliterated by an EF5 tornado. The town is being rebuilt as a ‘green’ city using wind and solar energy and construction methods to minimize it’s carbon footprint. The downtown has lots a plants and it was an interesting tour. There was still evidence of the tornado, driveways with no house, foundations, and mangled trees. We saw a set of steps leading nowhere and a basement that was now being used as a garden.

Garden inside an old basement, Greensburg KS

Garden inside an old basement, Greensburg KS

Steps to nowhere

Steps to nowhere

Our next competition will be yet another first time contest for us.
A special THANK YOU to David of Butcher BBQ for his support and wonderful products http://www.butcherbbq.com/ . Thanks to him our chicken scores have improved dramatically!

Wildblue Barbecue

This past weekend we competed at the WildBlue BBQ in Burlington KS. It was their 9th year but our first time there. It was held at Kelly Park and there were lots of things going on besides the BBQ. They have a nice playground, there was an arts and crafts fair, hot air balloon glow, and several vendors and exhibits to see. A big plus is they have a large community building on the grounds that provided a comfortable and air conditioned place for the judges. As cooks, we like happy judges!
We got a chuckle from the organizer when we were checking in, she said they were intrigued by our name and several of them had spent some time “perusing” our website. On the other hand, she never did say if she liked it or not…….
Friday evening my sisters Debbie and Donna came down for supper and to hang out for a while since we were somewhat close to them. We also got a treat when we learned Justin was doing training flights and was going to be able to land at the airport and have supper with us. We coordinated so we were there when he and his crew came in so we got to see him fly.

Justin landing the UH60 with Wolf Creek power plant in the background

Justin landing the UH60 with Wolf Creek power plant in the background


It was good being able to hang out with and feed some family and friends.
We could tell we hadn’t competed for several weeks as we weren’t quite as organized as we should have been. Part of that was due to being extra busy in the week before. We had catered a birthday party, a business luncheon and family reunion for a total of about 200 meals so Thursday night was spent cleaning smokers and delivering food instead of our normal pre-contest routine.
The product was not our best effort, but was good enough for 10th place Chicken, 13th in Ribs, 16th Pork, and 17th Brisket which placed us at 13th overall out of 42 teams that included some real heavy hitters, 4 of which are in the top 30 in the country.
We also got our first look at the new KCBS score sheets. There is a lot more information on the new ones and it will take a while to digest it all. One piece on information now available is how you did at your table and which other teams were at your table. I haven’t decided what value that is, but it is bragging rights I guess. We did win our tables in Chicken and Ribs.
WildBlue BBQ is definitely a contest we will be considering next year.
We have a busy time coming up, so stayed tuned as the blog will get new entries weekly until things calm down again.