The day started ominously. It was rainy that July morning and unusually cool. I remember because it was the morning of Art in the Park with Blake Somers and LEGOs. (By the way, he is still collecting LEGO donations, and he won’t stop until he has enough for his sculpture, so now’s as good a time as any to give him some.) And, we all remember Harrisonburg’s last beer fest back in April… who can forget that downpour and the nature-made slip-n-slide? Would Jacktown’s Brew-B-Que Throwdown suffer the same messy fate?
Thankfully, no. At least, by the time we got there it was warm and sunny and all shades of happy. The event took place in the lot next to Jack Brown’s. For a mere $10 admission, you got a beer (provided by Abita) and a plate of food–pork butt, chicken wings, or pulled chicken. If you wanted more, you could purchase more wooden nickels.
Folks were eating and drinking, playing corn hole, hula hooping, and dancing to a reggae band, Inner Visions. I liked them. They were so positive and smiley.
We ran into lots of folks we know, starting with Jake Melvin, who recently returned from Belize and who’s been a nomad of sorts for quite some time. He’s been to forty-nine state, and when we asked which one he’d not visited, he replied, “The one that’s not attached.” To which Brandy and I simultaneously blurted, “Alaska!”
Turns out it was Hawaii. I always forget about that little guy, all tucked away in the middle of the Pacific.
Then this bizarre “Six Degrees of Brandy and Katie” thing occurred, starting with Shannon Dean, whom we work with. Then we saw former BHS students Katrina Hudy and Daniel Mumbauer. You might know Katrina from Wine on Water where she works as a manager. We did a post about them not long ago. Daniel and I commiserated for a bit about always being remembered as the tall one… “You know, she’s that tall girl…” I get that a lot. Then we ran into Phil Carr, who graduated high school with Brandy. What you might not know is that I was a long-term substitute for Brandy’s twelfth-grade English class. Phil Carr was in that class, too. And when the regular teacher returned from maternity leave, the class presented me with a cake that said, “Get The Hell Out.” It was really touching. And delicious.
And then we saw someone who seemed so familiar… he knew Jeremiah Jenkins, whom we also know… and I threatened to refer to him in this post as Nicodemus Schmidt if he didn’t just tell us his name already. Tim. And then when we told him where we work, it all fell into place. Turns out we work with his dad, Jim Peters. Tim was instantly mortified and begged us not to tell his dad that he’d said a couple bad words. Heh heh. School’s back in in a couple of weeks, my friend! :)
All this socializing was making me hungry, so we gobbled down some wings with blueberry sauce and pulled chicken with buffalo sauce. YUM. All locally sourced and very fresh. And we listened to the band and chatted, and before long it was all over.
Thank you, Aaron and Jeremiah and the Jacktown staff for an evening of succulent food and mellow music, interesting conversations and weird coincidences. Can’t wait to do that again, so plan something soon, will ya? Before it gets cold.
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