Well, the cook teams start arriving on Friday, usually after a preset opening time in the morning, but some contests can take you in on Thursday as well. Once the cook site is setup and ready for cooking, a representative – either an FBA Contest Rep or an inspector assigned by the contest organizer – will inspect your meat and, if there’s no problem, tell you that you can start preparing your meat for cooking.
Friday night, there’s always a cook team meeting around 5pm that you have to go to. After that, you’re free to party. Cook dinner, drink adult beverages, play music, whatever you would normally do on a Friday night with a bunch of friends… well, not everything. Sanctioned contests are required to have a quiet time starting at 11pm for those serious cooks, but that just means you have to be quiet. You can sit around and swap recipes until dawn with anyone who’ll listen, just as long as the folks nearby can sleep.
Saturday is the contest and rather than recap the rules, you should click here and read them. But suffice it to say, from ten o’clock in the morning when you start looking hard and long at your chicken and two o’clock in the afternoon when you put that brisket box on the turn-in table, all the fun is put on hold.
The winners will be announced late Saturday afternoon or early evening, awards will be presented, checks handed out, and the FBA Contest Reps will give you a score packet so you can tell how you did.
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