By: Susan Erler | Category: Recreation/Leisure | Issue: May 2010
The Stewart family enjoys delicious barbecue at last year’s Boots and BBQ festival, hosted by the Claremore Reveille Rotary Club. (L to R): Pastor Kevin Stewart, Bethany Stewart, Diane Stewart and Faith Stewart.
Put on your Wranglers, dust off your Stetsons and get your taste buds prepared for some of the best barbeque this side of the Red River! It’s time to join the Claremore Reveille Rotary Club for two days of fun and friendly competition at the 2010 Boots and BBQ festival.
The Boots and BBQ festival, a Kansas City BBQ Society sanctioned event, will be held at the Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs, located three miles east of Claremore on Highway 20. This event is the primary fundraiser for the Claremore Reveille Rotary Club, a nonprofit group dedicated to helping others. Festivities begin Friday evening, May 14 with a Battle of the Bands, and continue on Saturday, May 15 with the majority of the activities, including live horse racing at Will Rogers Downs and a simulcast of the “Preakness Stakes” Triple Crown Race at the casino.
Teams will converge in Claremore from all across the country, as far away as California, to compete for top honors, bragging rights and cash prizes. Last year, over 60 teams competed for the coveted title as best in their category – not surprising since Boots and BBQ boasts over $12,000 in cash prizes at stake, the largest KCBS cash purse in Oklahoma. Categories include Beef Brisket, Pork Ribs, Chicken, Pork Butt, Dessert and People’s Choice. Meat categories pay on the top 10 places. Tasting kits can be purchased in advance for only $4 each and on the day of the event for $5. These are good for as many samples as you can eat. “No one will go home hungry,” laughs 2010 Rotary President Dan Schiedel. “I guarantee it! Not only do we have barbeque but side dishes too, along with a wide variety of cold drinks to wash it all down with, from lemonade to beer.”
A raffle is taking place in conjunction with Boots and BBQ, and entrants can win some fabulous prizes. A $1,000 Horizon Smoker, a $1,000 Hasty Bake Grill, a spa package, and grilling supplies and equipment are all possibilities to win, and you need not be present to win. The drawing will be held at noon on Saturday, May 15. Tickets are $1 each, are on sale now and can be purchased through these fine groups: Zoi’s Animal Rescue, CASA, Habitat for Humanity, Blue Star Mothers of America, Volunteers for Youth, RTCA Church, and from any Claremore Reveille Rotary member.
Saturday is a busy day and begins early. Kiddy rides and the Cherokee Casino both open at 10 a.m. At 11 a.m., Taster Kits go on sale and the barbeque tasting begins. Attendees are welcome to participate in selecting the People’s Choice award from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Formal judging will take place simultaneously.
Live racing at Will Rogers Downs takes place at 1:35 p.m., with the BBQ awards ceremony held at 3:30. The “Preakness Stakes” Triple Crown Race will be simulcast at the casino at 5:15. It will be a day filled with fun and food, with all proceeds benefiting the projects sponsored by the Claremore Reveille Rotary Club.
The club is 35 members strong, each of whom is sincerely dedicated to helping others. Some of their projects include providing dictionaries for all third-grade students in the Rogers County area; providing $1,500 in scholarships annually to local students; sponsorship of foreign exchange students; sponsorship of the Will Rogers Day Parade; new shoes for needy children, along with funding for the drilling of water wells in Third World countries and distribution of donated medical equipment and supplies; and so much more. The club meets every Thursday from 6:45 a.m. to 7:45 a.m. at the Rogers State University Student Center, 1701 W. Will Rogers Blvd. All are invited to join them.
For more information regarding Boots and BBQ or the Claremore Rotary Club, contact Barb Blankenship at
(918) 344-4530 or visit their website, www.claremorereveille.com.