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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 12-02-2008, 07:59 PM   #1
QDoc
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A thread below asking about cooking three weekends in a row made me curious.
What is your occupation?
Does it allow you to cook back-to-back Weekends?
Trailer self contained or tent?
One man team or multiple team mates (partners)
Number of contests per year?

I am an oral surgeon, one man team with occasional helper cooking under a tent. No way I can cook back to back. It wears me out. I try and cook 2 or 3 contests in Arkansas. Maybe more when I retire. I also judge 2 or 3 contests per year. Time is limited.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:08 PM   #2
backporchbbq
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HAHA back to back weekends. No way. I am an EMT and work between 50-85 hrs every week. I have to plan ahead to do comps. Practice is even harder. This year I am going to try and scale back my work and do more comps. Even though it costs a lot, it is a heck of a lot of fun.

I am part of a team. Usually there are 3 of us, plus my mom who shows up and does minimal just likes to hang out. Sometimes there is one more or less person. All depends on the dates.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:16 PM   #3
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I wonder about this all the time. We're just judges, but we still can't take time off for every contest that has sauce, salsa, etc, on Fridays. How in the heck do yall get the time off to compete?
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:20 PM   #4
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Im a Software Engineer. Been with the same defense company for 30 years.
I have 15 weeks vacation queued up and I get 5 weeks a year more, plus sick time. Since i dont take big chunks of vacation, I can not use my vacation time fast enough as it accrues. So taking a 2-3 days off for each contests not an issue.

I used to be a tent and chair team. IMO, since getting the enclosed trailer thats prepped and ready to go made all the difference. Its alot easier just restocking, than unloading, cleaning, reloading, restocking, then unloading when u get there.

Team is me, my son, yak and danny.. Then anyone else that wants to joing us, but we are usually at least 4. I do 95% of the shopping and prep leading up to the contest.

Will shoot for 5-6-7 contests a year. maybe a few more this year.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:25 PM   #5
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Yep, comp Fridays are my vacations.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:25 PM   #6
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BBQchef, you are one lucky duck! How many people have worked at the same place for 30 years these days?
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Unread 12-02-2008, 08:29 PM   #7
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We did sixteen cooks this past season.

It's not just Fridays for us -- we have a crapload of drive time in it, too. We do a lot of overnight drives, and the Jack was a solid week gone for us.

We're both self-employed, so we're lucky to have a lot of flexibility. The boys' schools hate us, though. That flexibility doesn't even begin to address the issue of lost wages, either, because when VQ's cooking, he's not working, and that adds up. I wanted to title the season wrap-up picture on the website "Why We Didn't Get New Flooring This Year", and that's so accurate it's not funny.

We're two people, hauling gear in a borrowed 5x8 trailer, so everything gets packed and unpacked each trip. VQ sleeps at the site under the popups, I take the boys to a motel nearby.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 09:06 PM   #8
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I am self employed and have a great staff. My wife is around to handle on of our businesses when I am at comps on fridays. I am very fortunate to have a great family and staff to have my back when I am not around.

Oh yea - I have a salon and spa and a repo company. Two different ends of the spectrum. Thank god I can feed off of both economies.
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Unread 12-02-2008, 09:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OC PIG ASSASSINS View Post
I am self employed and have a great staff. My wife is around to handle on of our businesses when I am at comps on fridays. I am very fortunate to have a great family and staff to have my back when I am not around.

Oh yea - I have a salon and spa and a repo company. Two different ends of the spectrum. Thank god I can feed off of both economies.



Now that's a good deal
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Unread 12-02-2008, 11:21 PM   #10
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Large team of volunteers, we do numerous events all year.
Most recently we served over 30,000 meals the weeks following Hurricane IKE in Galveston.
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Thank You To Caring Volunteers
What a blessing is it to be a blessing to others. On behalf of Moody Methodist Church and the Lighthouse Charity Cooking Team, we want to thank everyone who volunteered time and effort while we served more than 30,000 meals to the Galveston community in the weeks following Hurricane Ike.
We heard over and over how wonderful it was to be served a free hot meal everyday. And thanks to the folks with the Lighthouse Team, the meals were top notch! In these tough situations having people take time out from their own problems speaks volumes for the compassion that Galvestonians have for one another. Many volunteers showed up time and time again. Without your help we would never have been able to provide this service to the community.
"Well done thou good and faithful servant."
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SAN LEON — More than 200 volunteers from Valero and Lighthouse Charity Team served a turkey-and-dressing lunch for residents affected by the hurricane.
News - November 28, 2008
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Unread 12-02-2008, 11:41 PM   #11
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I'm an IT Project Manager right now. Was an IT Manager for 10 years. Cooked 19 weekends this year and 21 contests, up from 18 last year. I was a one man team for a little over half of them. Everything is in a self contained trailer. Used a lot of my PTO for contests, however, starting a new job, I didn't have as much. Worked it out with my employer to take a few Friday afternoons and putting in extra time during the week.

Longest stretch this year was seven BBQ weekends in a row... one was a cater in the seven. I've done multiple 5 contest runs over the last two years and many more three contest runs. If you are going to push more than 12, you really need to think about what you really need out there. Your process has to be one that can be replicated week after week without killing yourself.

Most contests that I cooked alone, I had the trailer cleaned top to bottom, everything stowed, was hitched up and ready to go home at least 30 minutes before awards. Some contests, I got an hour nap before awards.
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Unread 12-03-2008, 12:00 AM   #12
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I've been an owner of a business communications company for twenty years. My partner is heavily into music and often takes time to play gigs with one of his bands or attend bagpipe competitions (yes, they have worldwide organizations, just like BBQ). We try to cover each other as much as possible so that someone is always minding the store during regular business hours.

In my business, it doesn't matter when or where you do the work as long as it gets done before the deadline. Back to back contests can be exhausting though because you don't have the recovery time between since you are working long hours to get enough work completed so that you can leave town for the next show.

The Johnny Mitchell's Smokehouse Team is made up of three cooks and one or two non-cooking helpers. Our rig is an 8 x 20 mobile kitchen. Our goal is to cook about ten contest each year.
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Unread 12-03-2008, 02:52 AM   #13
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At comps we live like we are in a third world country. Until we get comfort there is no way I could do 3 in a row. Plus my sponsor "wife" probably would tighten her grip on the $.
I have been self employed forever, and times are tough. Wife makes the money these days.
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Unread 12-03-2008, 05:49 AM   #14
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Well I am an IT Manager and I am really never off of work, even when I am on vacation I am still on call and am expected to answer my work cell 24x7 (Disaster Recovery mod). I have plenty of vacation time, and I am lucky enough to work from home so I work alot via my Blackberry, and I have a good staff.

This past year we only cooked 3 Comps but catered or vended almost every weekend from Late June through mid October. I have teamed up with BBQ Bubba and I have my nephew and my 2 boys with us. We have also been known to have some special guests cook with us as well (Thanks BruceB and Sfisch). We normally sleep in our lounge chairs or in our trucks. The last contest we rented a trailer and it was very nice. We are working on getting a trailer that we can use for both Comps and Catering/Vending. Should be in our lineup by the time Comp Season rolls around.
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Unread 12-03-2008, 06:01 AM   #15
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I am an IT nerd as well....by the way I am surprised by all of us BBQ nerds that are also computer nerds.

We live in a tent at comps, because we just started last year and the wife wants to make sure that we do it enough before we spend money on comfort. In her defense she sleeps right there with me, and was pregnant during all of our comps this past year. I don't like to take a lot of time off, so taking three or four day weekends is how I spend my vacation. I typically try to be on call during comps, because that gives me our sprint card, so that I have internet at the comps. :)
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