I should learn to read before voting. I read the thread topic and immediately chose large comps because that appears to be the way KCBS is headed.
My actual position is that there is no reason that all of the above cannot be accomplished. The KCBS mission is "to celebrate, teach, preserve, and promote barbeque as a culinary technique, sport and art form. We want barbeque to be recognized as America's Cuisine". If that is truly the mission, success will not be achieved with just one or the other. There wil be growing pains aplenty and like it or not change happens. Change will have to be managed by the duly elected BOD and we as members have to become active participants and have the responsibility to elect the best, monitor the results and change as needed.
Basically, achieving our goal comes down to marketing. There are 2 levels.
1. We have to effectively market BBQ as a sport to sponsors to keep the sport alive. I think KCBS is doing a pretty good job here.
2. We need to market BBQ as a life style because it is truly "America's Cuisine". All of the pics on this forum alone of parents and children BBQing together are a testament to the importance of maintaining certain American traditions - especially ones that bring families closer. Marketing BBQ as a lifestyle needs the smaller comp/community involvement apsect. In today's fast paced society, the most effective marketing is local. We no longer live in a time with 3 tv stations where big ads were about all it took. Marketing in today's environment requires action or as Levinson coined, Guerilla Marketing. I see the larger comps, tv shows etc as old model paid advertising - less effective at getting the message out than it once was but still effective at reaching a large group and delivering parts of your message. That makes Promoting / supporting the smaller local comps and community involvement guerilla style community marketing. Just like building a business, we have to employ a comprehensive marketing / PR strategy to achieve our mission.
So, I say all of the above.
[COLOR=red]The Soundside Smokers Competition Team[/COLOR]
2 UDS / 1 XL UDS / Chargriller Duo / 2 Weber Kettles / Masterbuilt / Home-made whole hog cooker