Carpenter Celebrates 12th Annual BBQ Bash
Though unfortunately timed construction work on Hwy 105 may have blocked the southern entrance to the town of Carpenter this weekend, it didn’t hamper anyone’s desire to go and enjoy great food, great music and great times as the community gathered to celebrate a dozen years of their popular “Barbecue Bash” festivities.
The professionally sanctioned cooking competition saw 18 teams from all over Northern Iowa and Southern Minnesota set up their campers and their cookers, and throughout the weekend dished up pound after pound of delicious foodstuffs that all gathered to enjoy.
The concern of the cookers, however, was the enjoyment of the 18 judges, who held the arduous task of taste-testing it all and blindly judging every submission in each category of ribs, shoulder, brisket, chicken, chili and lastly, dessert. BBQ Bash Chair Rick Rosenberg said while congratulating the winners at the trophy presentation that the judging had never before been so close, with multiple ties and some categories being decided by just four-tenths of a point.
This year’s Grand Champion was a nine-year participant of the Bash: Herky’s Hot Box BBQ, led by Matt Varner of Kensett alongside Mike Adams of Meyer and Josh Kronneman of Mason City. Varner was thrilled the team finally took away the championship despite years of unfortunate second-place finishes, and a technical setback this year with their homemade smokers, causing them to jury-rig the outtake with an empty beer case, which just may now have to be the team’s lucky charm.
Winners of each category received a homemade commemorative grill cover, along with a cash prize and BBQ Bash t-shirts.
Young ones participating in the Little Miss and Mister BBQ Bash competition got some time to “cook” as well, showing off their skills making a special dessert dish of “sand pudding” for their parents and grandparents to enjoy. Jaycee Finch was crowned Little Miss, and Cameryn Nord was crowned Little Mister. Finch, 9, is the daughter of Aric Finch and Heather Birkedal. Nord, 3, is the grandson of Michelle Jensen and Fred Bublitz.
Patrons on Saturday night enjoyed a rocking set from the immensely popular midwest cover act ‘Boogie and the Yo-Yoz’ who returned this year to play countless hits to the delight of the crowd well into the early morning hours.
Other activities throughout the weekend included the annual truck and tractor pull, human foosball tournament, sand volleyball tournament, ATV time trials, a blindfolded driving competition, along with kid’s games and inflatables, home-based business displays, and silent auctions and raffle drawings.