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In Reply to: St. Louis River Rub Event posted by u.s.af. Vet on October 14, 2011 at 11:15:51:
This was a sad story all around. The long-term cost to the BBQ community in St. Louis will be greater than that of any teams who are shorted prize money, and of course the man behind the event is paying the highest penalty.
It is unfortunate that pressure to advertise higher prize money and the KCBS guarantee policy can influence novice organizers to promise higher payouts than they can deliver. $28K for a first-year event is way too much to promise unless you have that in sponsor money already in the bank. The majority of cook teams understand the dynamics of a first year contest and don't have a problem with events that start out with a modest guarantee, especially if the organizer expands the payouts on the fly when the event is successful.
As cooks, there is one important thing we can do to help new events succeed: send your applications in early! With no history to rely on, a first-year contest is flying blind when budgeting, and that problem is amplified when teams wait until a couple weeks before the contest date to send in their checks. If we can make the effort to get those apps in a couple months in advance, we'll be doing a small part to avoid another contest meltdown like River Rub.
If we as a community can make that happen, perhaps some good can come out of this mess after all.
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