28 May 2012

BratFest Weekend!

Memorial Day weekend in Madison means it's also time for "The World's Largest Bratfest!"  In the past we've just gone and enjoyed the brats and live music, but this is also an event to raise money for charities, specifically for us, our Boy Scout troupe.  For every hour a person works on behalf of our troupe, they get about $8.  Sign ups happen early, like Feb., so we can get the spots.  This is basically the only fundraiser our scouts do.  We thought this year would be a good year to "get our hands dirty" and join in the volunteering fun!

We also signed up about  5 weeks ago to walk the 5K Brat Walk (as part of the 5K Bun Run.)  It's part of the being healthy thing we've been trying to do.  When I signed up to do all these things, I had no idea I'd be/I was pregnant!  Thankfully it wasn't really an issue, even with morning sickness.

Friday night into Saturday morning it rained and thunder stormed all night long.  Sariah was in our room most of the night and I woke up about 5 or 6 times, so I was kinda of tired, but ready to walk!  We arrived at 8:45am, about the same time the rain stopped.  It was overcast with a nice breeze, perfect for a walk!  Here we are pre-walk (sorry about being in front of the Budweiser sign!)
My awesome (and 21 week pregnant) friend Miriam, walked with us!  We're super pregnant women!
Sariah took this picture of the 3 of us, pre-race.
The race started about 9:30.  We were obviously in the back since we were walking.  The kid's thought it'd be fun to hold hands for awhile.

The race went around the dog park, through the parking lot, and up and around the neighborhood.  There was a lot of up for awhile!  We weren't even to mile 1 when the first runners crossed the finish line.

Here we are at the top of the hilly section and headed back down.  If you squint, you can see the capital ahead.
Here we are finally walking past mile marker 3!  We're almost to the end!
Victory!  We finished in just over an hour.  I think the first mile was the longest, but after that we caught a good pace.  We weren't the last over the line for sure.  The kids were really good in their strollers and enjoyed the ride.
It was about 10:30 when we finished and Doug's grill shift didn't start till noon, so he took Sariah over to do some ridiculously over-priced carnival rides.  They did a dragon roller coaster & the ferris wheel.  Bryson went over and claimed us a table where we would camp out until 2pm.

Isn't this the cutest t-shirt that Bryson is wearing?  I found it at Target and had to have it.  Esp. because Bryson loves saying "hotdog!"
The kids both ate 2 hot dogs each, corn on the cob and a cup of ice cream.  Doug ate 3 brats, and I ate 1 brat and about 2.5 ears of corn on the cob (morning sickness doesn't really agree with greasy meat, but corn?  nom nom nom!)  We got free brat and soda coupons for walking the 5K, and they were put to good use!
Doug's grill shift went from noon to two.  By then the clouds had parted and the sun was out, so even though he put on sunscreen, he was pretty toasted when he was done.  I managed to walk by and snap a picture of my man grilling meat.  Yum.
The kids and I parked at our table and enjoyed the live music and tried to stay in the shade.  We had 4 different groups of people (including one single mom with triplets!) join us while we were waiting.  Considering we were full and there wasn't really much to do, the kids we're really good while we were waiting for Doug to be done.

Here's Doug and Sariah hanging out afterwards.  We get free t-shirts for volunteering and for walking the 5K, yay free shirts!
Monday (today) I headed back to Bratfest by myself for my volunteer shift.  I opted to be a "wrapper" basically putting the brats in buns and wrapping them in paper to sell.  I got assigned a table with a very nice retired woman and 4 spunky teenagers.  Mainly I opened the buns and put the brat in and handed it to someone to wrap.  I was also the unofficial person to make sure we always had buns in our tray.  It was a lot of wrapping really fast, then waiting around for more brats for awhile, but it got pretty busy after noon.  (My shift was 11-1)  Here's a couple quick pics I snapped while we were wrapping.  I wanted to get some of the un-bunned brats in the pic.
The only pic of me, poorly & quickly taken.  Along with my retired friend who's name I sadly can't remember!
I was kind of worried about smelling those brats for such a long period of time and getting sick, but it didn't really hit me until an hour and a half in, and the last half hour went by super quick!  Besides the shirt, we also get a "brat buck" good for a brat or corn or soda and a free ice cream coupon after we volunteer.  I opted for another corn on the cob because I didn't think I could stomach a brat (my brat consumption was down this year, with good reason, but is a little sad because I do enjoy a good brat with pickle relish and "Official World Record" mustard.  Maybe next year!)  The corn was so tasty this year!
I also got some mint explosion ice cream from Chocolate Shoppe.  It was enjoyable to eat on my way back to the car!
We had a lot of fun this year.  As of today at 2:45 the brat eaten total was 140,400 (Bratfest holds the world record of most brats consumed in a 4 day period at 209,376.)  They might not be on target for breaking the record this year.  On the upside, we will definitely be volunteering again next year and hopefully walking (or running?) the 5K again.  We've had a blast!  Ya'll are welcome to come visit us next year for all the fun!

1 comment:

Alan and Denise said...

Sounds like a festival we would enjoy attending. Glad you had fun!