I was honored when Swamp Boys was invited to be a part of the Big Poppa Smokers Elite Team. For those who aren’t familiar with it, Sterling Ball aka Big Poppa Smokers formed the team of like minded pro barbecuers from across the country who believe in Camaraderie, Collaboration, Competition, and Children’s Charity. It’s a great group that I am proud to be a part of.
What a lot of people don’t realize is that one of the main goals for the Elite Teams is to raise money for children’s charities. That is something Big Poppa Smokers has always been involved with on a big scale, and now they are giving us an opportunity to help out as well.
At the beginning of the year, each team chooses a charity that they will be competing for. I have chosen our local kidsPack. In short they help feed the less fortunate children here in Polk County. Surprisingly, almost three in every four students enrolled in Polk County public schools qualify for free or reduced-priced meals. In a Gallup poll, Polk County was ranked as the 3rd worst county in the country for child hunger. There is lots of need right here in our own community.
So at the beginning of the season, Big Poppa Smokers starts each team off with $1,000 in their “account”. This is not for the team, but actually represents the minimum amount that team will be able to donate to their children’s charity at the end of the season. All during the season the Elite Teams will be competing against each other via points earned at each contest they cook, similar to team of the year points. At the end of the season the team with the most points will have an additional $5,000 dollars added by Big Poppa Smokers, making the winners minimum donation $6,000. I say minimum because BPS also awards each category winner for the season $2,500 to their account for donation. So in all BPS is putting up $30,000 for the Elite Teams to battle for, which all goes to children’s charities! It’s a win-win: the Elite Teams get to battle all year in a virtual head to head format for bragging rights and raise awareness for their charities, and children’s charities across the country will benefit from the donations. Each one will receive a minimum of $1,000!
To keep up with the race, visit the BPS Elite Teams: Children’s Charity Points Race website. It’s always being updated so check back often. And soon it will have a map showing what the teams are doing to help kids through BBQ. It’s a great program and Swamp Boys is proud to be a part of it.