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FACT: 55% of members choose charcoal when cooking for leisure    
FACT: 23% of KCBS members work in the food service industry as a restauranteur or caterer    
FACT: Learning from friends, family and at competitions is the best way to improve cooking skills    
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Pignic Is True Picnic

October 31, 2008
The Cherokee Pignic in Canton, GA was a fantastic time!  This was only the second year of the event but it was extremely well organized and should only get bigger and better as time goes on.

We got into town on Thursday and unfortunately took a wrong turn but our contacts at the Pignic were great and got us to the right place in no time. The park that held the event was in a valley area right off the main road. As we pulled down, some teams were already set up and the main tents were already up. This event had both a "professional" division and a "backyard" division of BBQ teams.

The professional division had some big names that we would see the next weekend in Lynchburg.  The biggest difference between the two divisions was that the "backyard" division did not fix brisket for the overall championship, in addition to lower entry fees and prize money. When I think back to our start in BBQ, a "backyard" contest was our first initiation to BBQ and got us hooked for bigger and better things. It is interesting how many people that we visit with who love to cook but are either intimidated by some of the cooking teams who pull into events driving big RV's and motor homes or think that they need some "special" smoker to compete in "professional" BBQ contests.  Chris and I always encourage them to just jump in and have some fun.

One of the volunteers directed us to our location and low and behold, there were bleachers for the crowds to sit on for our demos... BLEACHERS!!!   We had hit the big time!  Usually we use hay bales or make people stand around... it is worth it for them though since we sample out the Tabasco Chipotle burger, Weber Kick'n chicken and Weber "Chicago" steak right from the grill off the stage to the crowd!

On Friday night, Chick-fil-a did a cow drop from a helicopter... showing my age, I was hoping it was not like WKRP in Cincinnati when they dropped live turkey's for Thanksgiving one year... luckily it was not and we got to watch 1000 little cows with parachutes slowly drift down to the crowd below. The wind even blew our way a bit and I got to snag one.

Saturday was beautiful and we had a really big crowd that filled the bleachers which was really cool. We cleaned up and even had a chance to hit the awards ceremony where we got to see our old friend Troy Black take home the Grand Championship trophy. Chris told me afterwards that Troy was the last one to enter the contest and only brought the bare minimum of meat to cook up.

After the awards, we invited the event committee back to the trailer to help put the event ending check mark on the back of the trailer. They put on a very nice contest and treated us like old friends coming home.
Mike & Chris

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