This morning, Ronnie and I met with the City of Taylor to discuss our 2023 Cookoff and the concerns we all have about potential fires that could be caused by unsafely transporting your pits when you return home on Saturday after our awards. We also have concerns with those teams that have gas generators. We must all recognize that we share a responsibility to make sure our historic event does no damage in these dry and windy conditions. The future of our Cookoff depends on all of you cooperating and taking this seriously! When you check in on Friday, you will be handed these rules and you must read them and verify you have everything in compliance before you are allowed onto the site. We will discuss this again at the cooks meeting at 6pm Friday and we will remind you at the awards on Saturday.
· Each team must have a fire extinguisher in working order.
· Each team with their pit/smoker/trailer must check in, and then check out on Saturday.
· Each team must have concrete or stone pavers that must be placed under your generator (if it’s one that will sit on the ground). These must be twice (2 times) the footprint of your generator. If your generator measures 3 foot by 3 foot, then you must have pavers that cover twice that size.
· All pit/smokers must be either in or on a trailer, or on metal legs that are off the ground. If you are using metal barrel type smokers, then you must have them on concrete or stone pavers. No pits along with their fire boxes will be placed on the bare ground at any time.
· We must have at least 1 member of your team’s cell phone in our database to keep you posted about emergency information.
· Each team is required to have a metal shovel that is large enough to remove all of your pit debris/ash.
· Each team, along with their families/friends must pay close attention to the no parking zones along Sycamore Street to facilitate Emergency Vehicles gaining access.
· Each team will allow our staff, along with the Taylor Fire Department, to routinely inspect your cooking area and your pit to ensure all fire safety concerns are addressed.
· Each team will apply water to the areas around your generator and your pit to decrease the chances of a fire. If you need help with this, contact myself or Ronnie and we can help you. Our contact numbers are on your registration and rules documents.
· Each team must always have 1 member available to monitor their pit when your fires are lit, day and night. No pit can be left unattended while it’s hot.
The following are NEW mandatory rules that you must comply with before you are allowed to depart.
This year, all pits/smokers will be emptied of all your wood ash/debris before you are allowed to leave the park. Notice on the site map, that ALL pits/smokers will exit the designated area and each one will be inspected by the Fire Department. Metal barrels will be provided at the departure inspection site. You will use your metal shovel to remove all debris, whether it’s still hot or cold, into metal barrels. No pit/smoker will be allowed to leave by any other way, except the designated official inspection site (see map). Your pit/smoker will be inspected to verify there is no ash/debris remaining before you are allowed to depart the park. We expect our awards to be around 3:45 to 4:00pm. We are tentatively scheduling the exit inspections by the Fire Department to start at 5:30 to 7:00 pm. Please notice on the maps, the routes to the inspection area. If you do not depart during the designated inspection time, your pit/smoker/trailer will not be allowed to depart and must be monitored overnight before being allowed to depart.
Our committee is here to help you with anything you need. It’s imperative that we take this situation seriously. If at any time you have concerns about fire or safety issues, please contact either Ronnie or Tim, and we will help you. If you see a fire starting, even a small one, use your fire extinguisher and call 911 immediately and give the dispatcher an accurate location in the park using the zones I have designated that the Fire Department will also have.
The future of our event will depend on all of us working together to remove any potential fire hazards.
We ask everyone to take this seriously and if we are successful in a safe event, we will celebrate our 45th Cookoff on August 16th – 17th in 2024.
Ronnie Michna and Tim Mikeska
on behalf of the Taylor International Barbecue Cookoff Committee.
Taylor International Barbecue Cookoff
Location: Murphy Park, Veterans Drive, Taylor, TX, USA Mailing Address : PO Box 607 Taylor Texas 76574
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