This is new material, so I will try one perspective.
Do most teams show up on Friday night just for the comraderie and more time to get settled rather than very early on Sat ? Do some teams show up that morning on Sat ? I just want to be able to ensure one of my team members can commit to a full weekend if we go outside of NY somewhere down the road for a competition.
Using the more common cook Sat night event--it is all a matter of mileage and travel time. Logistics.
For Dave and I, If it is less than about 2 hours travel from "base camp"--we go on Fri AM. Get set up, meat inspection/prep done, socialize, and then nap/cook as needed. We then try to clean up/pack before awards. Travel back home Sat evening.
Big problem here is safety on the return trip since we are dog-assed tired and should not be driving. And, that is without the aid of libations on the short schedule.
We scared ourselves to death coming out of Sebring last Jan for a 2.5 to 3 hour trip home. DAMN Lucky when it was over.
We have settled into the "arrive Thursday", "leave Sunday" mode since most of our comps down here involve huge driving distances. And, we can now relax, enjoy the company of other teams, have a bunch of libations (as desired), and that is what it is all about.
The goal for us is to be awake, alert, and focused during meat prep time and the cooking/turnin process.
Whatever it takes to make that happen!
"Flirtin' with Disaster" BBQ Team (RETIRED)
FBA and KCBS Cook and Judge.
Former owner of a WSM, a Smokey Joe, a Charbroil Commercial gasser (junk), the legendary "StudeDera", a Fast Eddy PG500, and Sherman.
Now cooking with a Yoder YS640
Proud Pellet guy cooking on real wood.