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Friends ready for 13th annual Bubba Can Cook

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The smells of barbeque pits and the sounds of Texas country music will soon fill the air again as the 13th Annual Bubba Can Cook festival fires up Sept. 13-14 at the Grimes County Expo Center.

Check-in begins on Friday, Sept. 13 and there will be a youth cook-off, live music and a cook’s meeting that night.

The main cook-off judging begins Saturday morning (Sept.

14) with a Bloody Mary contest at 9 a.m., and ending with brisket judging beginning at 4 p.m. There will be two bands, awards and an auction on Saturday as well.

The flagship event for the Friends of Grimes County promises to be as big as ever, despite not being sanctioned by the International Barbeque Cookers Association (IBCA) this year.

Dianna Westmoreland, a director on the FOGC board, said the event will still have seasoned judges who have been an integral part of past cook-offs.

“We have a great crew of very experienced BBQ judges who will do a terrific job of keeping everything fun and fair to all,” Westmoreland said.

Payouts from the event go to the top 10 finishers in each category, with total payouts topping $10,000. All proceeds generated by the Friends of Grimes County non-profit organization go directly toward projects that help the county’s youth and seniors, as well as fire departments and local law enforcement endeavors.

The cook-off judges will have a slew of contests on Saturday, including:

9 a.m. — Bloody Mary contest

10 a.m. — Pinto Beans

11 a.m. — Open Seafood

Noon — Open Dessert

1 p.m. — Chicken

2:30 p.m. — Pork Spare Ribs

4 p.m. — Brisket

FOGC still seeks volunteers to judge some of the contests. Anyone interested should inquire within the Grimes County Expo Center prior to those respective contests.

For anyone wanting to go for food and music, entry at the gate is $5 per day.

Payouts to the cook-off winners totaled more than $12,000 last year, and more than $22,000 over the last two years. Anyone wanting to still participate in the cook-off should contact (936) 825-8095.

Friends of Grimes County is a local 501c3 non-profit that distributes 100 percent of its proceeds to local senior and youth organizations. FOGC has no overhead expenses and no paid employees, as it’s 100 percent volunteer. Since its inception, the charity has paid out more than $175,000 to local organizations.