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moocow
08-01-2012, 03:11 PM
As a cook and a contest volunteer I have seen both sides both sides of how a contest is run. It is not my intention to pick on organizers because we couldn't do this without them but hear are a few guidelines you should follow to have a great contest.

1.) Have a website with info and a team list, we like to know who we are competing against.

2.) Send out (mail/email) an information packet a week in advance of the contest.

3.) Have plenty of good volunteers, when you think you have enough get a few more.

4.) Have at least 2 volunteers taking carte of the teams at all times.

5.) Trash should not sit on the ground for more than 1 hour.

6.) Get the water for the teams, they set out there jugs and you fill them up in a timely manner.

7.) Your volunteers should know when, what and where everything is going down so they can let the teams know when they ask.

8.) If you volunteers have golf carts make sure they are offering rides to anyone who needs it.

9.) if you provide power make sure it is ready to go when teams get there and is reliable.

10.) Make sure you have enough judges.

Am I out of line with these?

Just a few of my thoughts, feel free to ad your comments. I have been at several contests this year where the volunteers are to busy drinking beer and giving there buddies rides on the cart to help you carry a 50 pound jug of water back to your site!

Uncle Buds BBQ
08-01-2012, 03:18 PM
11.) When you receive a judge application. Pop off a note to him letting him know that you have received it.

12.) Reply to a judges email

13.) When you get close to the event date email the judges telling them where they stand as far as getting picked to judge. If you are planning for 40 teams and I'm 60th on the list. No problem...just let me know so I can make other plans.

EatonHoggBBQ
08-01-2012, 03:24 PM
11.) When you receive a judge application. Pop off a note to him letting him know that you have received it.

12.) Reply to a judges email

13.) When you get close to the event date email the judges telling them where they stand as far as getting picked to judge. If you are planning for 40 teams and I'm 60th on the list. No problem...just let me know so I can make other plans.


You beat me to it. LOL

dmprantz
08-01-2012, 03:26 PM
If you sell ice from a specific spot, always have some one manning that spot. Don't make me wait for some one to show up with a key.

Uncle Buds BBQ
08-01-2012, 03:30 PM
If you sell ice from a specific spot, always have some one manning that spot. Don't make me wait for some one to show up with a key.
You wiener! What's how you got "banned" from Sam's clubs! :wink:

Uncle Buds BBQ
08-01-2012, 03:31 PM
You beat me to it. LOL
Sorry John. I'm on a rant! Out of 30 applications I sent out this year maybe half even acknowledged it right away!

EatonHoggBBQ
08-01-2012, 03:35 PM
Sorry John. I'm on a rant! Out of 30 applications I sent out this year maybe half even acknowledged it right away!


I know the feeling brother. :mad2:

Fat Freddy
08-01-2012, 06:20 PM
I am new to this competition game but in the 4 contests I have done this year 2 have done it right and 2 have not.

14)Have ash cans easily accessible.

One of the contests had 1 large ash can on other side of campground. Another contest did not want to pull out ash cans until after awards and the public leaves. Contest I did this past weekend, Mason City, had ash cans at each site so I know it can be done.

2Fat
08-01-2012, 09:05 PM
Sorry John. I'm on a rant! Out of 30 applications I sent out this year maybe half even acknowledged it right away!

Absolutely--what is so hard about acknowledging a judges interest in your contest!!! Some contests do it very well, some barely and some not at all!!!!

Pack-A-Smokes
08-01-2012, 10:46 PM
Let the teams know when you receive their application and if they are in or not!
I asked one organizer if he would let me know and he told me to check and see when my check clears the bank!!!

Don't make the teams hunt down the meat inspector.
Spent two hours at a comp last year trying to round up a meat inspector.

KC_Bobby
08-01-2012, 11:26 PM
Provide teams various color flags/ribbons to hang for different needs, for instance pink for meat inspection, blue for water, yellow for ice - then a volunteer already knows what they need

Or a dispatch cell phone #

Jorge
08-01-2012, 11:31 PM
I think Shane should organize a contest:evil::mrgreen:

Jeff_in_KC
08-01-2012, 11:32 PM
Shane does... Smokin' on Big Creek! :wink:

Jorge
08-01-2012, 11:34 PM
Shane does... Smokin' on Big Creek! :wink:

Has anybody told Stan?:shock:

Rookie'48
08-01-2012, 11:58 PM
11.) When you receive a judge application. Pop off a note to him letting him know that you have received it.

12.) Reply to a judges email

13.) When you get close to the event date email the judges telling them where they stand as far as getting picked to judge. If you are planning for 40 teams and I'm 60th on the list. No problem...just let me know so I can make other plans.

Yes, some organizers will keep you informed all the way through the process, others don't tell you squat even if you ask. The organizer who keeps everyone, cooks and judges, in the loop shows that he understands that we are more than just numbers on a spreadsheet.

dmprantz
08-02-2012, 12:00 AM
Rather than ribbons i'd love to be able to text my needs: "two bags ice. Site 34" and it shows up:).

crd26a
08-02-2012, 12:15 AM
Don't charge me $5 for a $1 bag of ice

Q-Dat
08-02-2012, 01:05 AM
Don't make the teams hunt down the meat inspector.
Spent two hours at a comp last year trying to round up a meat inspector.

Oh yeah that will make your blood boil!

CivilWarBBQ
08-02-2012, 02:09 AM
You know you are just inviting a "Notice to Contest Cooks" post, don't you?

Out of curiuousity, what are you nutty Midwesterners paying for a contest with no running water?

SmokinOkie
08-02-2012, 08:12 AM
Rather than ribbons i'd love to be able to text my needs: "two bags ice. Site 34" and it shows up:).

Great idea.

Actually I'd expand that to say ice, meat inspection, power problems, questions, help, etc, etc.

And conversly, the organizer can get everyone's phone and send out texts with info on them (team meeting, changes, weather issues, etc, etc)

moocow
08-02-2012, 08:16 AM
I like the text idea, I know my cell number was included in the information packet that was sent out at our contest.

Just Pulin' Pork
08-02-2012, 08:43 AM
When the chitter is full have it cleaned! Don't have a secondary contest running on the side, seeing which chitter gets filled to the rim first! Ex: NKC contest 2 years ago!

Nordy
08-02-2012, 09:09 AM
I like the Texting idea... It would be easy to do, low cost, and just put the number to text needs etc to in the detailed info packet that you should already have online or have emailed to the teams...

Babyboomerboy
08-02-2012, 09:11 AM
I think Shane should organize a contest:evil::mrgreen:

As the organizer of a contest, I can say that Shane has helped us and given us several suggestions to make our contest run smoother. Thanks again Shane

Don't charge me $5 for a $1 bag of ice

We started out four years ago giving away free ice and we have no intentions of changing that. Just can't see charging a team more money when they have already spent a bunch of money for the meat to come to our contest.

Slamdunkpro
08-02-2012, 09:21 AM
When the chitter is full have it cleaned! Don't have a secondary contest running on the side, seeing which chitter gets filled to the rim first! Ex: NKC contest 2 years ago!
Caveat; DON'T position a big row of porta pots right by the judge's tent and then have them serviced during the turn in window.

I like the Texting idea... It would be easy to do, low cost, and just put the number to text needs etc to in the detailed info packet that you should already have online or have emailed to the teams...
Flags work better as long as the ice/water/trash carts make regular frequent loops.

moocow
08-02-2012, 09:39 AM
As the organizer of a contest, I can say that Shane has helped us and given us several suggestions to make our contest run smoother. Thanks again Shane



We started out four years ago giving away free ice and we have no intentions of changing that. Just can't see charging a team more money when they have already spent a bunch of money for the meat to come to our contest.

Thanks Ron, Free ice rocks!

dmprantz
08-02-2012, 09:46 AM
The things I like about the texting info, if there is a person driving around on a cart, he can sit by the ice and wait for a text to come in. If some one else takes over, hand off the phone. You can actually get disposable cell phones pretty cheap these days. Get a second one for the meat inspector? It would require the ice/meat guys to be on the ball, but often I feel like I have to wait for the guy to come by, flag him down and say I need ice. The whole time I'm not doing something else I should be, and half the time it's not the right person and he has to radio some one anyway.

Just my thoughts...

dmp

2Fat
08-02-2012, 10:26 AM
You know you are just inviting a "Notice to Contest Cooks" post, don't you?

Out of curiuousity, what are you nutty Midwesterners paying for a contest with no running water?

Same as the ones with convenient water-but only once!! have had to schlep water at more then a few midwestern contests---even the Sams Club in Madison, Wi.. Usually carry 100ft(or more) of water hose--the BWS love their water!

wingpirate
08-02-2012, 10:45 AM
6.) Get the water for the teams, they set out there jugs and you fill them up in a timely manner.


Maybe this is a regional thing, but I've never seen this done at any of the cooks I've competed at. If there is running water at cooks, the hoses are dropped every few teams or so for community access.

It would be cool if volunteers would fill our jugs/tanks, but I've never seen it.

dreed
08-02-2012, 11:05 AM
never seen water delivered to the sites. as to paying a little extra for incidentals, a lot of comps are done to raise money for charities, so I don't mind paying a little extra for items if it raises more money for the charities.

You want everything else on your list I would suggest coming to the Roc City Ribfest or any number of Northeast Comps.

DawgPhan
08-02-2012, 11:18 AM
You know you are just inviting a "Notice to Contest Cooks" post, don't you?

Out of curiuousity, what are you nutty Midwesterners paying for a contest with no running water?


Teams in GA have it good.

hawg
08-02-2012, 11:38 AM
I am organizing a cookoff right now for October. As a recovering cooker, I have already though of many of these things, but several I have not, and they are really good ideas, not hard to do. Thanks for the input to help our cook run smoother. We want our cookers to want to come back next year -

Uncle Buds BBQ
08-02-2012, 12:32 PM
Teams in GA have it good.

Yes we do.

I always enjoy those free 3am massages for the cooks.

olewarthog
08-02-2012, 01:25 PM
We don't do 3 am massages at the contest I organize, but we do provide a full breakfast on Sat am -- bacon, sausage, eggs, grits, biscuits, coffee, OJ. We have running water withing 50 ft of every site & provide free ice. We have access to real bathrooms until turnins start, then teams have to use porta-potties.

Now if I could just get cook teams not to wait until the last minute to send in their app. :wink::grin:

Uncle Buds BBQ
08-02-2012, 01:42 PM
Now if I could just get cook teams not to wait until the last minute to send in their app. :wink::grin:

Do you offer a financial incentive to register early? That always gets my attention.

tyotrain
08-02-2012, 04:02 PM
Sent my money in over a week ago. There was only 3 spots left I have been emailing them with no response.


Have fun and happy smoking
BBQ UP

Captain Caveman
08-02-2012, 05:21 PM
#15) (or whatever number we are on now) When you advertise your contest in the Bullsheet, Please list the City and State where the contest is to be held.

Smokin Mike
08-02-2012, 09:27 PM
maybe a food donation after the contest?

I know my freezer is full, and don't really care to take leftovers home anymore.

Slamdunkpro
08-02-2012, 10:21 PM
#15) (or whatever number we are on now) When you advertise your contest in the Bullsheet, Please list the City and State where the contest is to be held.
I'll take this one step further:
Put a real (and correct) street address on all your materials and the contest website; even better, put the actual GPS coordinates.

CivilWarBBQ
08-02-2012, 10:43 PM
Teams in GA have it good.


Yes we do.

I always enjoy those free 3am massages for the cooks.


Thanks. We try, even though we are only lowly organizers.

Sorry we can't guarantee a Happy Ending though. :caked:

Slamdunkpro
08-03-2012, 11:02 AM
Shane's Notice to contest cooks thread caused me to come up with a few more:



Don't expect every team to send you money to use interest free 12 months in advance. If your finances can't handle your event not filling up until 30 days prior, it's time to reassess.
Don't create and assign cook sites that are clearly unusable or that will become instant quagmires if it rains a few drops. (Recent examples I've seen: a 3 foot wide 2 foot deep stump hole in the middle of a cook space, a 2 inch pipe sticking up 3 feet in the middle of a paved cook space)
Don't short cook spaces; if it's supposed to be 20x30 then make it 20x30 not 15 x 22. If 2 10x10 EZ-UP's won't go in my 20x30 space side by side I know something's up.
Don't lie to the public to get a bigger gate: You know we can't give out samples. When you mislead the public, charge a gate fee, and the public expects free BBQ guess who takes all the heat? Guess who won't be back?
Enforce quiet time

nukenight
08-03-2012, 08:54 PM
1b) Make sure the website is up long before your contest is to take place. In other words, put current material on the page a few months before the contest and avoid doing it at the last minute.

1c) After the contest, take the time dated material down and list winners and pictures from the event. You can put up a teaser for the next contest as soon as it is available.

1d) Frequently update information as things change. Pages where data is not timely and out of date are no use.

1e) Cross list information from the webpage on social media.... You want exposure.

Yes, my wife and I write webages. In fact, my wife currently maintains a webpage for a KCBS contest in our state. These are some of the things we have observed. I hope this helps!

olewarthog
08-04-2012, 09:22 AM
Do you offer a financial incentive to register early? That always gets my attention.

No, but I will accept the app with a $50 deposit.

Slamdunkpro
08-06-2012, 11:24 AM
I don't think these have been mentioned yet:

No surprises in the final cook's letter / package. Don't wait until a week(or less) before the event to tell us things like:



You can't leave until 10pm, or Sunday or other load out restrictions
You can't get sited until 3pm Friday or other load in restrictions
No water
Electric will only be on from 10pm Friday to 2pm Saturday
Restrooms will be locked from 10pm Friday to 8am Saturday
Electric will be an additional $200



If you do spring deal breaker surprises, don't be indignant when teams want to withdraw.


If award checks can't be presented at awards, make sure that they are sent out in a timely manner, not 90 days later.

SmokinGuitarPlayer
08-08-2012, 10:10 PM
More competitors are bringing rv's and campers etc.
Have running water to all sites.
Have GOOD electric to all sites , 30 amp available by request or just have it.
Enforce quiet time stringently.
Have trash /ash barrels
and have it ALL at or before you expect the competitors to arrive... don't set up the electric while we are all watching .

and something that seems like it is happening more lately ..don't ruse the public into thinking they will be judging barbecue ...and don't keep the competitors late on Saturday so you can have a big climax to your stage show giving out the awards. We have to drive for hours to get home.... we didn't sleep much or at all the night before. We smell like smoke and need showers. We REALLY DO NOT want to have to sit in the hot sun until 6 pm waiting to find out that Dan won again!

Wampus
08-09-2012, 10:23 AM
14)Have ash cans easily accessible.

And GREASE cans/barrels (multiple if possible and necessary). It SUCKS having to walk across the whole contest area while carrying a full hotel pan filled to the brim with hot grease because you are on the opposite end of the one grease barrel. Just sayin.

Funtimebbq
08-09-2012, 07:31 PM
I dump all my grease into one of those plastic oil change containers that holds 5 quarts to transport instead of carrying the grease in pans. I do agreee, multiple dump sites would be nice.