The Albie Aware Breast Cancer Foundation holds a rib cook-off annually in order to raise funds for the cause. Teams are competitive, good natured, eager to show off their BBQ skills, as well as being the primary ingredient for a successful event. Hours of work are involved as BBQ experts slow cook, season, spice, smoke and tender care for their entries in hopes of placing first place.
Along with serious BBQ cooking, there comes a great deal of humor, fun, camaraderie, and a lot of sauce sticky fingers and mugs. In truth, some people seem to be hanging out for the suds and the shots since Hilltop Tavern is, after all, a tavern. However, perhaps the best use of alcohol this year was the smoking chips derived from an oak whiskey barrel used by “The Lost Boys” rib cookin’ team.
The “Best” of the Albie rib cook-off is really the cause and the funds that are raised that go toward helping “underserved women and men pay for expensive breast cancer diagnostic tests.” Albie’s mission is “to save more lives and empower people with breast cancer through awareness, education and support.” The rib cook-off draw rib lovers, competitive spirits, raffle enthusiasts, eager tummies, fans and supporters. Its an annual event that people look forward to whether joining as part of a BBQ team, helping to organize, hoping to win one of the many prizes from the hundreds of raffle tickets purchased or sharing fun with family and friends. Throughout the event venue one can often find breast cancer and other cancer survivors that will share their stories. One may also find families who have lost loved ones, those who are now facing the cancer battle, and those who raise their pink flags in support.
This “Best of ” list is all in good fun in honor of the cook-off spirit where some get teased, some do their best to please, some pout and many cheer. The “Best of” list is not serious because its the cause that wins out every time as the recurring “Best” aspect of the event. You can find out more about Albie Aware Breast Cancer Foundation at their official website here. Awareness saves lives. Financial support provides early detection for those who don’t have insurance coverage. Education enlightens and informs I’ll be aware, Albie Aware, we’ll be aware.
Best Award Acceptance
Club 2-Me took 3rd place but had to be coerced into stepping onto stage to accept the award. Club 2-Me BBQ master stated, “third place is embarrassing.” However, the presentation officials and the crowd got some good-natured and charming smiles out the gentleman as he accepted the award and posed for photographs. This moment depicts the fun of the competition that BBQ teams take seriously. Everyone wants to place first place but third ain’t so bad and participation makes all teams winners for the Albie cause. Thank you BBQ teams!!!
Best celebration of a win
Club 2-Me again ranks a “best of” in the 2013 Albie list. This “best of” is due to the exuberant and dramatic celebration by team member upon hearing the announcement that they placed an award out of over a dozen competitors. Look at that happy dance. Its fun to be recognized indeed. Dance Club 2-Me, dance and clap.
The Raven wins a “Best of” award for best competitor entertainment. This eleven year old black belt was eager to show off her skills upon the emptied pockets of the tall man talked into being a target. Go Karate Girl Go. That’s a pretty cool and entertaining demonstration of a side kick lass… and both target and kicker were happy to comply to a request for a second enactment.
That’s right. Rocky Niehaus won 1st place last year and that’s his crown he ordained his head with. Those hats are pretty cool for grilling dudes. However, they have little to do with the fact you placed 1st for a second year in a row. No more tears boys, we know you’re happy and glowing with joy.
Judging. Inevitably overheard at the 2013 and all other Albie Ribbin’s are comments such as “how do I get to be a judge” or “that’s a real hard job, ha ha” or “I wish I could eat all those ribs.” In actuality, the job requires training. That training does not merely consist of practice by eating dozens of racks of ribs. Chef Hef in the back row in the red is a well recognized chef and official judge who takes the competition judging seriously. Its not always easy to determine the best and in most cases someone is always a wee bit of a sore loser. Whatever it takes, though, most people wouldn’t mind this job.
Best Mode of Transportation
Tired of walking? The best mode of transportation is getting someone to pull you around in or on some kind of wheeled contraption. This wagon load of smart kid was hands down the best mobile demonstration at the event. Outside the venue, the sponsor’s pink Go Girl Van might have placed second but a few motorcycles across the street and a few bicycles traveling past hedged them out.
Best Name “Lost Boys”
The “Lost Boys” remembered to include the pirate hat as well as the bloody hook on their banner. Everyone loves them some “Lost Boys” as long as Peter Pan is not the one cookin’ the ribs.Urban cowboy, Mr. Retro, Sir Charming and Gnarly Pirate made a great “Lost Boys” team and they take a mighty fine pic as well. Lost Boys are found at the 2013 Albie Rib Cook-Off.
Best New Guy “Big E’s BBQ”
Big E’S BBQ, aka Eric McFadden, was new to the Albie Cook-Off scene. He came as the representative for the Zebra Club and made some mighty fine ribs as well as macaroni and cheese and some sweet potato side dishes. Big E’s highlight in spice was the cracked black pepper giving his ribs a nice but not palette destroying heat. Way to go new guy. Hope to see you again next year!
BBQ master from “The Limelight” clearly had a sense of humor. He enjoyed posing for pics with his “Psycho” rib knife. Awarded winner of Best Sauce utilizing Jagermeister, Limelight returned to the competition after several years hiatus. Nice comeback!
Best Physical Feat
“Massive Brews” team member wins for best physical feat as he lifts the – whoa – heavy BBQ lid in order to tend to some grilling links. This contraption holds water for keeping the meats moist and weighs a hefty amount as seen in Mr Massive Brews’ exerted facial expression. Yeah to the physical feat winner for not dropping the black dome!
Best Girl Group
Best Girl Group goes to the “Team Tina — Together We Fight” lasses and their whacky leader in massive ringlets and yellow dress. Those are some great T-shirts girls and your dancing brought more life to the event.