Hawgeyes BBQ

2006 Senior Q

October 14, 2006

 Senior Q, Sunny View Style

  By Mike Tucker


....On October 14th, members of the Iowa BBQ Society gathered for the second year in a row to acknowledge the importance of our Senior Citizens. The location was once again the Sunny View Care Facility in Ankeny, Iowa. Sunny View is a beautiful facility, with a staff of professional caregivers. The day was once again an overwhelming success.
....The event planning for this project began back in mid summer. Barbeque Society members Mike Tucker and Darren Warth were once again in charge of the details. It was agreed that October 14th was the date they were available. A call to Deb Koedam, the corporations' manager for the facility, locked in the date. In the following months, while Darren an myself were busy ironing out the details on our end, Deb was busy making arrangements on the care facilities end. Deb and her staff did an excellent job of sending out invitations for the event, ordering tables and chairs, arranging entertainment, taking care of beverages, desserts, and so on. Darren did an excellent job of preparing a menu for the day, working out quantities, and last but not least, quality of the food to be served. Just the week prior, Darren had won the Reserve Grand Champion Title at the American Royal Invitational, so there wasn't any question about who would be doing the cooking. The menu was to consist of 120#s of smoked chicken, 40#s of beef brisket, 40#s of pulled pork, all sauced with 3 gallons of donated sauce from "Russ and Franks" BBQ Sauce, 10 gallons of baked beans, and 8 gallons of cold slaw.
....The morning of October 14th started early. The sun was just coming up when we started. Darren and I met at my shop in Ankeny at 7:30. From there we went up to the care facility with all of Darrens' equipment, and a trailer smoker from my shop. Darrens competition team name is "Smokin Clones", and my business name is "Hawgeyes BBQ".
....This is one event that there is no competition between the two rivalries. We had everything set up and flowing smoke by 8:30. Volunteers from the BBQ Society showed up to help with all of the work. Lee Booton, Mike Beauchamp, Josh and Lela Swallow, Jennifer Butcher, Bret Wram, Chris Wheeler, and Josh Thrap were busy prepping meat, setting out food, and assisting in any way needed. The air was crisp as the sun came up over the building. By 10:00am, the care facilty staff began showing up. Crystal Hodak, Diane Backous, Mubina Delic, Rachel Boardman, Clint Royston, Mary Sherrard, Jill East, Vahid Skrebo, and Deb Koedam were busy setting up tables and chairs, setting up the serving area, bringing out fantastic desserts, and getting the residents ready for the feast to come. At 11:30 we sent 10 servings of Darrens championship bbq into the facility to be processed for those who needed special processing. At 12:00, the people started forming a line at the buffet under the gazebo. The flow of residents and family members went on non- stop until 1:30. These people were not light eaters. When you think of senior citizens, you think of frail, light appetites. I can personally assure you this was not the case. The Residents loved the food, and they had very few, if any restrictions from eating it.
....Aside from the great food, quality family time, and sunny weather, the residents had more to look forward to on Saturday. A Guitar player worked his way around the crowd, strumming soft tunes. David Crabbs of The Ankeny Academy of Music did a very nice job of entertaining the Seniors. They truly enjoyed his talents, as did we.
....The last thing that added to the event was the one that stands out most in my mind. It was a dog. Denise Ortgies-Jones, a volunteer from the Animal Rescue League, brought out her Licensed Therapy Dog "Jimmy". Although Jimmy was banned from the food serving area, he patiently waited for residents to finish their lunch. After lunch, Jimmy and Denise were ready for some visiting. Jimmy is an old dog, with gray around his muzzle. He was slow, and quiet. But that old dog made the rounds to visit the residents like a seasoned pro. He lit up the room with every personal visit. He laid next to a man in his recliner. He got a special treat from another man in his room, who had them hid in his closet. In the hallway, Jimmy received a hug by a woman he had never met. Jimmy visited a lot of old friends that day, and made a bunch of new ones.
....And so ended our second Senior Q. After cleaning up, packing, and heading home, we all felt we had participated in something special. We brought back a taste of home, if only for a day. In 2006 Iowas' Governor, Tom Vilsack, signed a proclamation declaring October as officially "Senior Q Month" in Iowa. Its here to stay.

Hawgeyes BBQ
1313 SW Ordnance Rd
Ankeny, Iowa 50023
T 877.841.7192 or 515.965.1206
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