Loads of fun for all at Aragon’s 45th an­nual BBQ

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL - By Sean Williams swilliams1­[email protected]­hoo.com

Whether it was for the bar­be­cue or for the soft­ball game, dozens of lo­cals gath­ered at Tom Pittman field for what proved to be an­other suc­cess­ful Aragon BBQ.

The event, now 45 years old, stayed largely true to its roots with lots of food to go around and a flashy dis­play of fire­works to top it all off.

Bar­be­cue was cooked nearly all day long, but there were plenty of other op­tions for hungry lo­cals. Food booths were sell­ing fa­vorites such as slushies, fun­nel cakes, pop­corn, and le­mon­ade, and those who still had leftover money after chow­ing down could be seen vis­it­ing crafts ven­dors and other gen­eral goods sellers for shirts and me­men­tos.

And it was in the ven­dors where the changes to the city could be seen. New busi­nesses and artists in Aragon means new booths were avail­able at the bar­be­cue, and while tra­di­tional items were still sold, new restau­rants such as Barn Belly Burgers joined the ros­ter of ven­dors for the first time.

The Aragon BBQ has also tra­di­tion­ally been a place for chil­dren to burn off some en­ergy and this year was no dif­fer­ent. In­flat­able slides and bounce houses were home to dozens of en­er­getic youth, and whether they were play­ing or watch­ing, the soft­ball games seemed to keep them thor­oughly en­ter­tained.

Tra­di­tional events call for tra­di­tional mu­sic, and live cov­ers of clas­sic coun­try and rock tunes from fa­mous artists such as Johnny Cash and oth­ers set the at­mos­phere. Some pre­ferred to sit and watch the band, but oth­ers used the mu­sic as a back­drop to their own ac­tiv­i­ties.

How­ever, re­gard­less of how they spent the day, the Aragon BBQ man­aged to reach 45 years thanks to the peo­ple who show up and par­tic­i­pate. Mayor Garry Bald­win once de­scribed the event as sur­viv­ing off the cit­i­zens’ com­mit­ment, and it re­mains true of the June 22 event.

“It’s the cit­i­zens’ com­mit­ment to it,” Bald­win explained dur­ing a pre­vi­ous Aragon BBQ. “It’s a long-stand­ing event. It was started by some peo­ple that are no longer with us, and they left a legacy for us. Peo­ple en­joy it. It used to be a fundraiser for the fire de­part­ment, but now it’s just a com­mu­nity event. We don’t even try to make money off of it- we just hope we break even. Most of the peo­ple that started it aren’t here any­more, so we just carry on the tra­di­tion.”

sean Williams

Chil­dren en­joyed the in­flat­able wa­ter slide at the 45th an­nual Aragon BBQ at Pittman Park.

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