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View Full Version : Reflections on the "Jack"


luckyduk
11-01-2011, 10:04 PM
So I have had a week and a half to think about this contest, and first off I want to say it was an honor to get drawn for this contest and we had a great time. It was great to meet so many new people.
My thoughts are in no way to take away anything from ANYONE that did well.
I am just wondering if I am thinking correctly or am I in the minority.
Does anyone else think that this contest was poorly ran, over-hyped and overall poorly organized?
In reference to: spaces (i basically shared a 20 X 30 with another team), percentage of cbj's vs. celebrity judges, payout, clusterfark with anything involved with the "hill", power, just a few thoughts?

Diva Q
11-02-2011, 06:51 AM
I am going to respectfully disagree to a point.

We received lots of communications about the Jack contest. In fact more than any other contest.
They accommodated our request not to be put back in the inner circle as we were flooded out last time. They accommodated our request to bring in a 5th wheel to save money on a hotel. they greeted us as soon as we arrived and made it clear to us about the requirements on security check in. The Sheriff came by and greeted us and thanked us for coming.
We had no power issues. They checked on us 3 times to make sure we had our porta potty. We had meat inspection completed quickly.
Overall the organization from experience this year was great..
The Jack has never been about the money. While I believe the payouts should be higher I think of it as just a gift alone to be going. It is the only contest that really promotes International BBQ. Worldwide.
The judging doesn't bother me. You know it going in and it doesn't affect TOY points.

I think BBQ hill while beautiful - is absolutely over packed and I would not go up again. Not worth the line ups. I did not stay long. I don't care about free drinks. We were one of the last buses and that certainly didn't help.

Having said all this the Jack is a great way for Brown Forman to showcase their brand. It is a marketing and prestigious BBQ event and you have to look at it like that. Take from it what you can enjoy what you can. Enjoying the Jack with friends and teams from all over the world is an incredible experience.

Bbq Bubba
11-02-2011, 08:47 AM
I am going to respectfully disagree to a point.

We received lots of communications about the Jack contest. In fact more than any other contest.
They accommodated our request not to be put back in the inner circle as we were flooded out last time. They accommodated our request to bring in a 5th wheel to save money on a hotel. they greeted us as soon as we arrived and made it clear to us about the requirements on security check in. The Sheriff came by and greeted us and thanked us for coming.
We had no power issues. They checked on us 3 times to make sure we had our porta potty. We had meat inspection completed quickly.
Overall the organization from experience this year was great..
The Jack has never been about the money. While I believe the payouts should be higher I think of it as just a gift alone to be going. It is the only contest that really promotes International BBQ. Worldwide.
The judging doesn't bother me. You know it going in and it doesn't affect TOY points.

I think BBQ hill while beautiful - is absolutely over packed and I would not go up again. Not worth the line ups. I did not stay long. I don't care about free drinks. We were one of the last buses and that certainly didn't help.

Having said all this the Jack is a great way for Brown Forman to showcase their brand. It is a marketing and prestigious BBQ event and you have to look at it like that. Take from it what you can enjoy what you can. Enjoying the Jack with friends and teams from all over the world is an incredible experience.

Easy to say being parked under a 20 x 20 pavillion! :twisted:

I do know several teams had space and electric issues and the hill was CRAZY this year due to more teams and the arrival of Guy but it is what it is. Its the Jack and anybody i know would give their left nut to cook there. :thumb:

JD McGee
11-02-2011, 10:02 AM
This was our second year to cook the Jack...I thought the organization and communication was excellent. BBQ Hill seemed to be overcrowded for folks arriving later in the evening...same as last year. The pay outs and judging leave a lot to be desired...but it is what it is. This was a very expensive trip for us...but well worth it for the simple reason that we got to visit with a LOT of family and friends in the area...and oh yeah...we got to cook a little bbq too!

atvalaska
11-02-2011, 11:13 AM
I for one think things were a bit off from last year, the meet a greet at the gate was non existent power, free zone in the back 40/city park, things got back on track when meat inspection time came…them folks were on it !..…I did not go up on BBQ hill this year as last year it had more folks on it then I see around my town in year, team mates went up..…an came back with “it’s a mad house” ….judging was a bit different then last year as my scores were all over…(pic’s side by side with last years turns in’s reveled some of that) ……everyone seemed a bit …too… serious, still had a good time in all that hot weather….the jack folks had there plates full with all the people….so all in all …good job! ......i'm still sad the deep fried foot long corn dog guy was a no show ...as i had my eye and my own bottle of ketsup waiting on one :cry:

2Fat
11-02-2011, 11:17 AM
Ditto what others have said--also remember 'the jack' is what it is because of the volunteers who give a week(or more) of their time to help around the holler
Security was BS(imo anyway) but B-F must have hired a security guy that needed to prove his(or her) worth to the company)
that all said we had a great time and the weather was perfect!
Great way to end the bbq season and

Kit R
11-02-2011, 11:34 AM
Yeah the hill was crowded and we had some power issues. But compared to the other events we've done in the past two years it was pretty well-run, the folks were super nice and that goodie bag was really awesome! And the way I see it, it was an invitational event and we were fortunate enough to get that invite in our second year of competition when other deserving teams have been waiting for an invite for many years. So yeah we are happy. Didn't hurt we actually got hear our name called twice too.

Podge
11-02-2011, 11:48 AM
poorly ran, over-hyped and overall poorly organized?
In reference to: spaces (i basically shared a 20 X 30 with another team), percentage of cbj's vs. celebrity judges, payout, clusterfark with anything involved with the "hill", power, just a few thoughts?

Ironic how 6,000+ teams still want to get in it!..

Jorge
11-02-2011, 12:11 PM
I was there, and grateful to be there. It's the Jack, it's different and that's part of what makes it special. I hope to be fortunate enough to go back and enjoy it again.

Scottie
11-02-2011, 12:23 PM
I was there, and grateful to be there. It's the Jack, it's different and that's part of what makes it special. I hope to be fortunate enough to go back and enjoy it again.



I hope to be there and do a shot with you... Those NEBS guys are wicked crazy... They do have good beeyah though...

The only thing i was disappointed in was everyone was in bed when i showed up... WTF.....:twisted:

Jorge
11-02-2011, 01:09 PM
I hope to be there and do a shot with you... Those NEBS guys are wicked crazy... They do have good beeyah though...

The only thing i was disappointed in was everyone was in bed when i showed up... WTF.....:twisted:

NEBSville was my destination of choice when I got out and about. I'll offer my public apologies now, because I neglected to offer you some local product when I came down off the hill and found you in our site:wink:

Scottie
11-02-2011, 03:49 PM
NEBSville was my destination of choice when I got out and about. I'll offer my public apologies now, because I neglected to offer you some local product when I came down off the hill and found you in our site:wink:


Don't you worry. Charlie and the ISS!!!/Lakeside folks took good care of me. Fortunately, the Sheriff didnt see me and i could enjoy a couple of hours... :becky:

ALX
11-02-2011, 03:49 PM
....i'm still sad the deep fried foot long corn dog guy was a no show ...as i had my eye and my own bottle of ketsup waiting on one :cry:

Man....I was pissed they were not vending this year.....Good corn dog hard find in these parts...

We did our second straight and with 89 teams compared to 76 last year the spots seemed tighter even with parking lot full behind ball field...

No complaints...Easy to say though when cooking/staying out of me sisters and BIL 12'x40' RV.....

Mike from Lakeside Smokers managed hook up a beauty of a junction box that fed 6 teams with some power(we use RV generator)

We ended up meeting many good comp folk as usual...32 degree saturday morning was a twist.....

No doubt we would do it again if invited......

Slamdunkpro
11-02-2011, 05:03 PM
I was over on the vend side so we had plenty of space and great neighbors. The whole "security check-in" was silly & pointless but isn't that the case with most "security"? I had a good time and hope to be back.

carlyle
11-02-2011, 05:12 PM
Justin,
We are just proud of your representation at both the AR and the Jack.

What ever your experiences were, they will help you the next time you are there.

I know what will help your outlook, a nice portion of "apple pie"!

Kit R
11-02-2011, 05:44 PM
I hope to be there and do a shot with you... Those NEBS guys are wicked crazy... They do have good beeyah though...

The only thing i was disappointed in was everyone was in bed when i showed up... WTF.....:twisted:

Not EVERYONE............:roll: Granted I was taking a stroll from Millionaires' Row.

ique
11-02-2011, 07:07 PM
I am just wondering if I am thinking correctly or am I in the minority.
Does anyone else think that this contest was poorly ran, over-hyped and overall poorly organized?

So much effort goes into getting the invite. A ton of online discussion in advance can hype it up. At the end of the day it is bbq contest like many others... it has some issues. But for me the location, the mix of teams and the adrenaline of getting a call at the Jack puts it at the top of my list.

luckyduk
11-02-2011, 07:24 PM
After reading everyone's thoughts, maybe I was expecting too much, given how it is hyped up and being a world championship.

With that said I would be happy to get an invite again, but now I would know what to expect (or not to).

Jorge
11-03-2011, 10:01 AM
I was over on the vend side so we had plenty of space and great neighbors. The whole "security check-in" was silly & pointless but isn't that the case with most "security"? I had a good time and hope to be back.

You, Old, New, and the rest of the crew were great. Just glad we all stayed out of the creek!

Candy Sue
11-03-2011, 10:29 AM
What a great time! I fenagled my way in as an I Know Jack judge (yeah, I kissed my way into that one!). I went up on the hill for the first time in the last 5 years. Got a great tip and headed over to the Greek dinner line. It was one of the most memorable meals I've eaten in a long, long time. The lamb chops just melted in the mouth! Pita, Taziki, Greek Lasagna, olives, tomato/cuke salad, everything just over the top good! Thanks to George, Big Jim and all the Primo guys and the lamb guys for doing this!!!

afreemaniii
11-03-2011, 10:41 AM
After reading everyone's thoughts, maybe I was expecting too much, given how it is hyped up and being a world championship.

With that said I would be happy to get an invite again, but now I would know what to expect (or not to).

I think the prestige of the contest is hyped up, not the amenities. We were lucky enough to go last year and read enough posts from others to know going in that space would be tight, flooding was a real possibility, and that power was spotty at best. We were expecting the worst, but ended up with halfway decent power most of the night, some neighbors that may have been closer than usual, but ended up being some of the best neighbors we've had at contests, and weather, that while cold at night, wasn't wet and the floods didn't come. The atmosphere is electric. Everyone is excited to be there, people are more than happy to help each other, and the awards ceremony brings out the goosebumps like no other.

Overall, The Jack is still the Holy Grail of BBQ for me and a place that I would relish the chance to get back to in the future.

Jorge
11-03-2011, 11:57 AM
What a great time! I fenagled my way in as an I Know Jack judge (yeah, I kissed my way into that one!). I went up on the hill for the first time in the last 5 years. Got a great tip and headed over to the Greek dinner line. It was one of the most memorable meals I've eaten in a long, long time. The lamb chops just melted in the mouth! Pita, Taziki, Greek Lasagna, olives, tomato/cuke salad, everything just over the top good! Thanks to George, Big Jim and all the Primo guys and the lamb guys for doing this!!!

I told everybody and their brother the trip up the hill was all about the salad!:wink:

bluegrass smoke
11-03-2011, 07:49 PM
It was are first time just visiting and all I have thought about since coming home is how we can get in next time!@!

bam
11-03-2011, 08:16 PM
There are problems at every contest. The Jack and The Royal the 2 contests no matter what happens please invite me.:pray:

Jeff_in_KC
11-04-2011, 06:18 PM
My impressions of the Jack...

I'd been there only to visit and campaign and had a great time in 2009! Wanted to go back to be able to compete more than anything I'd ever wanted in BBQ. So I get to go this year and communication leading up was great and I had the opportunity to request to be next to 4 Smokin Butts and Quau (we had a dinner planned plus we were going to use Dennis's shower). We were accompodated. Once we arrived, there was no one to welcome us. We found our site only because Dennis showed me where I was. There was a big pole in the middle of it and I was encroached upon by several feet (which I was ok with because it was a friend) so fitting in was a challenge to figure out the site layout. Check in was ok since we went EARLY on Friday but I saw a huge line waiting a little later. The Hill was WAY overcrowded and it took about 20 minutes or so in line to get a drink. Food was average at best. Couldn't even get up to put anything in Jasper before they burned it.

That being said, I would go back and do it all over again without even thinking!!! It's the Jack and that's all that matters to me. I appreciated the chance to just be there to compete and I went up to tell Debbie that after awards then again with an email. I appreciated the fact that many volunteers spent a ton of their own time to help out and make it what it is. I know that if you strip away all of the festivities and don't think about the mystique that is The Jack, it's really just another contest. But you can't just do that. It is what it is and unless they change the method for getting in, it's gonna be a BBQ career goal for many, many people for as long as they decide to throw the family reunion in the hollow AND call it the World Championship!

drbbq
11-05-2011, 07:42 AM
After reading everyone's thoughts, maybe I was expecting too much, given how it is hyped up and being a world championship.

With that said I would be happy to get an invite again, but now I would know what to expect (or not to).

No I think you are right. But it seems the mystique outweighs the lack of amenities. Especially the first couple times. After that it gets to be a grind.

Of course not every space is the same either. Matter of fact they're VERY different and once you've been there you know what to request. Then there's the unwillingness to say anything bad because you may get blackballed.
I used to have that little pavilion, for a couple years but then I pissed of the previous organizer and got moved. That's the Jack.