- Your a Low & Slow Meat Lover
- Your turned on by the smell of smoke and can’t wait to have it permanganate all of your clothing.
- Your having a craving for Deep Fried Butter and any festival must have a booth for that right?
- You love watching people compete and you checked the schedule and Mud Wrestling Season is still a month and a half away.
- Free Samples!!!!
But for me the best reason I had to make trip was so that I could spend time with people that have become great online friends and having the opportunity to spend a couple of days in a park with them that is warm (except maybe in the shade of that one tree right Doug?)
Now don’t get me wrong, of course there are other reasons that I attend the event, as a BBQ Blog Writer I have an interest in all things BBQ, the food… the music… checking out the cool smokers etc. But what I like best is the people.
If your a regular reader of my blog you know that whether I am covering an event, reviewing a sauce, rub, book or a restaurant then you know that I send a lot of time profiling the people more so than the products, I am a people person.
And I am so thankful that beyond all of the parts of a BBQ competition that I do enjoy, What I treasure more than any of it is getting to know the people and building friendships that have me longing to see them again.
At the Lakeland Pig Fest I met some people for the first time such as Myron Mixon, Tuffy Stone along with his Dad and Dr. BBQ Ray Lampe just to mention the guys that are well known accross the country. I was floored how down to earth they were and if I could think of one word to describe these stars of the sport it would be genuine.
It boggles my mind to that these well known BBQ personalities have even heard of me and or know of my work, which to this point is still only a hobby.
I also met some others for the first time like Tim Wysocki of the Hogs Gone Wild BBQ team and Tim was friendly and helped to make me feel at ease. I had talked to Tim previously on a very few occasions as a friend on Facebook but it is nice to get to know someone in person.
Kevin Sandridge is another that I met for the first time at Pig Fest, but the difference here was that we had talked extensively on social media in the past so I knew him well even before meeting.
Last year I did a review on Pirate Jonny’s Seasoning and I had the pleasure to meet both Jon and Terri his wife at Pig Fest, we walked around the park and more than once I held Terri’s pickle (inside joke haha) and I introduced them to a few people at the show including Doug and Biggi Francis.
Then there were friends that I had made last year in Lakeland that I got to spend time with again.
The Francis family Doug, Biggi, TJ and Melissa are a fantastic group that I have so much respect for and care deeply for and now that Tim has joined I can see that they have blended together as a team that will do very well in the future.
Chad Ward from Whiskey Bent BBQ is also a man that I consider to be a great guy and I am proud to call him a friend. He has done so much for the BBQ community on the whole but above all he is great to just spend time with.
If you came here looking for the results from Lakeland, well I do not have that list but you can go to Doug Francis’s blog “Lets Talk Hog” and he has the results.
I also have a ton of pictures on my Facebook Page that are of all the winners that went up to the stage.
I had a blast at the 2012 Lakeland Pig Fest and I am already making plans to go back again in 2013