13th SC(E) Soldiers Judge Blooming Temple BBQ Contest
Story and photos by Pfc. Naveed Ali Shah
13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs
The sun shone bright, the birds sang, and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky, but the beautiful spring weather wasn’t what had the Soldiers of the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) excited.
The city of Temple held its annual Bloomin’ Temple Festival April 16-19 in the downtown area and the Temple Junior Chamber of Commerce, an organization of young business owners and decision makers, invited Soldiers from the 13th SC(E) to judge Slovacek’s Sausage Cook-off and Barbeque competition.
“This is the first opportunity the Jaycee has had to host this event and it’s great,” said Andy Bass, president, Temple Junior Chamber of Commerce. “We’re just young people trying to make a difference.”
The contest kicked off with the barbeque rib tasting. Each of the participants submitted an entry and the Soldiers judged it on a scale of one through ten. The next round was the freestyle contest, where a variety of dishes, from seafood tacos to stuffed bell peppers, where judged.
“We invited the Soldiers out to thank them for their service,” said Bass.
“We could not lead our lives the way we do without their sacrifice,” said Justin Lee, Temple Jaycee committee member.
After the barbeque competition the Soldiers and their families were thanked by all those in attendance for their service.
“I appreciate the gratitude and support that the city of Temple is showing us,” said Sgt. Bryan Gravely, executive assistant, Secretary General Staff, 13th SC(E). “I really enjoyed the chance to come out here and have some barbeque.”
Sgt. 1st Class Johnnie Mitchell, equal opportunity advisor, 13th SC(E), takes a sample of chili from Donny Miller of Belton-based Aspen Air Conditioning during the annual Bloomin' Temple Festival April 18.