Along with being a contesting group Sands also enjoys its social side. You may have noticed in the general contest blogs, mention of the culinary skills of Barrie Kathy and Stephany who have whipped up a fantastic meal for us usually on the first night of a contest, and we all know that fed that an army marches on its stomach.
In past years we have had quarterly events where we wined and dined our wife's/partners. In June 2009 Barrie and Kathy gave us a great barbecue, the weather was good to us and everybody was able to enjoy an evening of quality food, and drink and friendly chat in the ambiance of Oysterber Farm
Barrie and Kathy invited us to join with them again on the 26th of June 2010 and Sands Contest Group were treated to a first class barbecue with Barrie working hard on the flame grilled chicken and excellent local sausage.
Kathy and Stephany took care of the presentation on the tables of salad based dressings and other savory dishes. A number of members also brought offerings for the table and we were treated to a feast of excellent food.
A fairly rare picture of members outside Hankocks Hut where 90% of our contests take place.
The first thing that hit me as I walked into a gathering of people standing around the area of Hancocks Hut was that tables had been laid out with food and people were sat under parasols to shade them from the evening sun.... enjoying a glass of wine or other drink they fancied (designated drivers enjoyed a soft drink or fruit juice.... I kid you not for I was one of those people)
But something was missing, and it took me a few minutes to realise what it was.
The giant holly bush had been taken down and the area landscaped with a stone floor, table and bench, and very nice it looked too.
Barrie tending the Flame Grill Chicken Half's and Legs, not to mention the excellent locally made sausages.
Kathy and Stephany were busy setting the tables up with a selection of salads covering all tastes, from Potatoes salad to the famous Basil Fawlty Waldorf Salad to name a few. Group members helped out on the salad front by bringing in a selection of their own salads and of course the Kathy's baked potatoes went down very well.
The tables also had savory meats and salad side dressing which included fresh strawberry's and green and red grapes.
Hughie was the first to tuck into the food as Barrie invited him to try one of the half chickens
Barrie Ray and Stephany
So the food is cooked and its time for everyone to tuck in.
Barrie in conversation with Emma & Martin
Here we can see Chris.... he dressed down a bit this year and left his Hawaiian shirt at home.... not that there was anything wrong with the Hawaiian shirt you understand.
As the sun sets over Oysterber Farm at the end of a glorious summers day, we settled down tummy's full, and were able to sit back and enjoy the evening and each others company until home time.
In the foreground we have Frank G8BME, but in the background there's Annette and Damien who did not have far to travel back to their caravan which was located just the other side of the meadow behind them.
Here's a picture of Hazel and Kev G6FKE
Emma & Martin
Well that's it, the end of the BBQ blog. I have not touched the subject of radio, that's not what the event was about. This blog is about 21 people having an enjoyable evening in each others company on a warm but comfortable evening in June.
We would all like to thank Kathy and Barrie for inviting us to join them for the evening and providing a first class barbecue and of course Stephany who works in the background but plays such an essential part in making the evening a success.
We were missing a few members who would have dearly loved to join us, not least were Mark and Jenni, Joe who was with us last year.... Matt whose had an accident in the garden (Speedy Recovery Matt) and last but not least Mike whose part way through his deployment with the British Antarctic Survey bod at the South Pole..... I really think he should have a shot using M0SCG/P although that may see us having to buy a new batch of QSL Cards.... It would be good to work him under his own call during IOTA at the end of July.
The next blog will be a radio based "special" on one of the group members..... Watch this space!