Bowmanville Ribfest is one that I can not miss every year and that is because I know so many people in this town, many of them very close friends, it has that home town feel to it.
Yesterday was day one of the 2012 event and Joe and I arrived at about 7pm.
First thing I had to do upon arrival is drop off 2 new signs that I designed and printed to the Horn Dawgs Smokin BBQ Team.
For those of you that do not know, my real job is in Graphic Arts and Printing which I have been doing since 1977 in many forms.
I have found a niche in the market combining my career of 35 years of experience with my passion of being involved in the BBQ community where I have the best friends I could ask for.
Just last week at the Pickering Ribfest they handed out Banners that I made for them handed out a prizes to the ribbers and one of them was proudly displaying their 1st place in Ribs which was one of the favorites in Bowmanville every year…. Boss Hog.
Before I mentioned good friends, well Rob Butler and Donna Darling owners of the Horn Dawgs are more than good friends they have been very close to me ever since I met them in 2010 and I am our friendship has become a very strong bond. Last year I helped them with all of their new signage.
It is not only about Ribs at a Ribfest, I would think if they had a Lemonfest they may not get quite the same number of visitors, but there is most definitely a place and a need for fresh squeezed lemonade here at the show (though the beer was flowing pretty good as well)
I got the chance to spend some time talking to Steve Butler (No relation to Rob) of S&A Lemonade he only works about 4 Ribfests a year but I was thrilled to find out that he used my Ribfest Schedule to get contact information for plenty of events that he did not know about. I am actually thrilled that so many are using my schedule to the tune of more than 500 hits a day.
I also saw Steve for a couple of minutes on Saturday when my friend Ann Burns bought me a Lemonade, and I did not know that Steve has the option of using artificial sweetener in his lemonade. nice to knw when we have to watch the sugars! Always learning new things from Ann Burns
Don’t ya just love how Steve made his stand out of an old pick-up box? I have always liked the flared fenders on the older vehicles.
The next few shots are the other teams that were vending at the Bowmanville Ribfest.
One other team that I have spent a lot of time talking to at various Ribfests across the province is Crabby’s BBQ Shack
One of the perks of my hobby is that every once in a while I get to sample some of the teams items and on this day I scored some Crabby’s BBQ Sauce a rack of Ribs and a package of a new item for Crabby’s called Porkerettes, I tasted them when I got home and those Pepperettes were awesome, fresh tasting and just the right amount of kick and heat that I like.
As Joe and I were saying our good-byes at the Horn Dawgs rig he got a hug from Manda which is nice and all, but let us remember how covered in sauce Manda gets while working the grill.
Er… Joey do you regret wearing a white shirt to Ribfest?….
Then it was on to Saturday and I was not planning on going that day but after some text messages from my friends Bob and Susan, asking me to go and another friend Ann Burns wanting to come out I just could not refuse. (Not like my arm needed to be twisted anyways
We all met in front of Horn Dawgs at 3pm and every one was quite hungry. Having not tried it yet we opted for the 4 Meat madness x2 along with a healthy portion of beans and slaw.
The 4 Meat Madness was tasty as could be, the chicken being really juicy and tender Horn Dawgs has great sides too the beans being a bit of a secret recipe.
After dinner they posed for some pics in front of the Horn Dawgs rig.
Being that Ann Burns, Rob Butler and myself all own our own business we all understand the value of promotion and top notch customer service.
After last week-ends rain drenched Ribfest in Pickering. everyone was hoping for clear skies and good crowds and other for a couple of quick showers everyone was happy with way the weekend worked out.
Sunday I had a lot to do around the house but at 2:30 I needed to take a break so I drove out one more time and my timing could not of been better.
They had just started the Ribs Judging not far from the bandstand where there was some really good local talent performing.
Something new this year was the option of voting online by scanning a QR code that was on various signs around the park that brought you to the website bRIB.ca where you enter your email adress, city and postal code and then check off your favorite ribber, those votes are then added to the write in votes that are filled in at the park.
I tried out the QR code and it was so quick and easy to do. I can see this method of voting being used more often.
Being in the Graphic business myself and working also with Ann Burns we both know the value of using QR codes in promoting businesses and how this platform is gaining a lot of populariy.
While the judging was going on the owners of the Rib Teams sat near by waiting to see if their name would be called.
Bowmanville only hands out 4 trophies, so winning one here is a big big deal, Nobody finishes second or third here, you either win or you lose it is that simple!
There was Best Judged Ribs, Best judged Sauce and the Peoples Choice award for best Ribs.
For the last 4 years Boss Hog was the most popular team in Bowmanville taking home the Peoples Choice each and every year.
It was announced at the last minute that there was a secret judging of chicken and the winner of best judged chicken went to….
The 4 year reign of Boss Hog has ended meaning that I am sure that 2013 will be a real battle to see if Boss Hog can claim the title back or that the Horn Dawgs will stay on top! or someone new may take the prize.
Congrats to all the winners but also, thank you to all of the ribbers, you all have fantastic product and you served the city of Bowmanville well!
There are many other members of the team as well but pictured above is Katie Wessel and Manda
The Horn Dawgs team was very excited to here that all of their hard work had paid off in winning the Peoples Choice award.