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2012 Tour Stop #10 - Safeway national Capital Barbecue Battle

June 25, 2012

After four years at the Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle, we finally hit the big time and graduated to being placed on Pennsylvania Avenue instead of 11th Street. It felt kind of like the coming of age when you finally get to sit at the adult table instead of the kid’s card table at the holidays. Pennsylvania gave us non-stop crowds through the weekend! 11th street was deemed "legends" row housing BBQ Pitmasters’ favorites -- Myron Mixon, Tuffy Stone and Johhny Trigg -- along with last year's champions, Heath Hall and Brett Thompson with Pork Barrel BBQ.

In front of us on Pennsylvania Avenue were some of the smaller tents and groups. One of them did not get their tent put up so Christine was nice enough to take over one of our extra 10 x 10 tents. This was a blessing and a curse because as I went down late Saturday night to drop the tent and load in the truck, I found a duffel bag under one of the tables unattended. Since we were in DC and had been told specifically to watch out for unattended bags, I notified the closest police officer and quickly walked the other way. The sky didn't light up and nothing went boom, so all was good for the night.

With this being a KCBS event, the organizer had sponsors for each of the categories along with a lamb category and Reser's® America’s Best Potato Salad contest. Serial Grillers won the chicken category, Burning Hot Unknowns won the ribs category and Johnny and Trish of Smoking Triggers won pork, brisket, lamb and beef. Burning Hot Unknowns took home the Reserve Grand Champion trophy while the Firefighting BBQ Team won their hometown event. Only the winners had to climb the steps up to the stage; I think just so Johnny could get his exercise for the weekend…

I did have to chuckle as the HISTORY Cooking Team, representing the History Channel, showed up in a semi-truck with a huge mounted grill, which was probably the second largest grill there, after the Johnsonville Grill. I guess it just goes to show that bigger isn’t always better as they took home 39th place at the contest.

All in all, it was another great weekend for the Great American BBQ Tour. We also got to stop by and see our grandson, Mason, on our trek across country towards Naperville and the Ribfest!

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