Breckenridge Texan

Wagons return to Breckenridge for Bob Drake Memorial Chuckwagon Cook-off

Wagons return to Breckenridge for Bob Drake Memorial Chuckwagon Cook-off
May 03
11:34 2021

By Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan

The top award at Saturday’s Bob Drake Memorial Chuckwagon Cook-off went to the team that was cooking in the wagon once owned by Bob Drake himself. The Shadow Peak wagon from Weatherford was named the Overall Champion in the event hosted by the Breckenridge Chamber of Commerce.

Alicia Tibbets with the Shadow Peak wagon from Weatherford rolls out dough for the peach cobbler. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

The cook-off, which is usually held in conjunction with Frontier Days, was a stand-alone event this year after the Chamber board decided to postpone Frontier Days one more year due to the coronavirus pandemic. Eight wagons traveled from around Texas, as well as one from Kansas, to participate in the contest.

To see more of Tony Pilkington’s photos from the cook-off, click here for the photo gallery.

Shadow Peak

Scott and Alicia Tibbets, along with Pacer Hughes and Kellie Ulbricht, took home seven awards, including the Overall Champion award. They also won first place for their dessert and potatoes, and they were the Runner-up in the Wagon Authenticity contest.

The Tibbets, who have a catering business in Weatherford, bought the wagon from Gene Caddell about seven years ago. At the time, they didn’t know it had been Drake’s wagon.

Drake started the chuckwagon cook-off in Breckenridge in 1997. It was renamed in his honor after his death in 1999.

Scott Tibbets said that, according to all the experts he’s consulted, the wagon was built some time between 1886 and 1890 in Chicago. Initially a grain wagon, it was one of the first wagons from the Peter Schuttler Wagon Works company.

Tibbets said he has kept the wagon in its original condition, including the paint.

Friday Night

After so many events were canceled in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, the chuckwagon teams were eager to get back into the swing of things when they arrived in Breckenridge on Friday night.  They set up camp, including tarps over their sites to protect everything from the rain, and started preparing for Saturday’s competition.

The Chuckwagon Cook-off featured eight wagons this year – Cripple Creek from Goliad; Double Wells from Hunt; Jewett Gap from Glen Rose;  Rafter JB Chuckwagon from Cambridge, Kansas; R — D Chuckwagon from Canton; Robertson Wagon from Granbury; Shadow Peak Chuckwagon from Weatherford; and, Wildcat Knob from Granbury.

This year’s cook-off included a new element, a campfire gathering on Friday night for local businesses and individuals who donated as Campfire Sponsors. Although the rain put a damper on the event, the sponsors had dinner with the chuckwagon teams. Later, Kyle Fambro provided the musical entertainment.

Saturday’s Contest

Early Saturday morning, May 1, the chuckwagon teams were back in their campsites, lighting their fires and preparing their food.

The contest featured chicken-fried steak, potatoes, beans, biscuits/rolls and peach cobbler for dessert. The teams cooked enough for the judges, as well as for the crowd that showed up. The meal was served at noon at the Breck Trade Barn just south of the City Park.

While the diners enjoyed their meals, several local singers entertained the crowd.

After the judges’ votes had been counted, the chuckwagon teams gathered in the Trade Barn for the awards ceremony. (See photos of each team with their awards in the Breckenridge Texan’s Photo Gallery.)

The judges’ results are as follows:

OVERALL CHAMPION
1st Place: Shadow Peak
2nd Place: Robertson Wagon
3rd Place: R — D Chuckwagon

Keith Lammons with the Robertson Wagon stirs a pot of beans at Saturday’s chuckwagon cook-off. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

POT WRESTLER
Double Wells

HOSPITALITY
Rafter JB

WILDCARD
Cripple Creek

WOODEN SPOON
Wildcat Knob

OVERALL WAGON/AUTHENTICITY
1st Place:  Robertson Wagon
2nd Place: Shadow Peak
3rd Place: Jewett Gap

MEAT
1st Place: Robertson Wagon
2nd Place: Shadow Peak
3rd Place: Double Wells
4th Place: R —  D Chuckwagon

POTATOES
1st Place: Shadow Peak
2nd Place: Rafter JB
3rd Place: Cripple Creek
4th Place: R — D Chuckwagon

BEANS
1st Place: Robertson Wagon
2nd Place: Shadow Peak
3rd Place: R — D Chuckwagon
4th Place: Wildcat Knob

BREAD
1st Place: R — D Chuckwagon
2nd Place: Shadow Peak
3rd Place: Jewett Gap
4th Place: Wildcat Knob

DESSERT
1st Place: Shadow Peak
2nd Place: Wildcat Knob
3rd Place: Robertson Wagon
4th Place: Rafter JB

RESIST-ALL ELECTRIC RANDOM DRAWING
Rafter JB

Robert Daughtry with the Robertson Wagon cooks up some chicken-fried steak at Saturday’s Bob Drake Memorial Chuckwagon Cook-Off, hosted by the Breckenridge Chamber of Commerce. For more photos from the event, click here to see the Breckenridge Texan’s Photo Gallery. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

Cutline, top photo: Alicia Tibbets with the Shadow Peak wagon prepares food for the Bob Drake Memorial Chuckwagon Cook-off on Saturday, May 1. Shadow Peak was named the Overall Champion of the competition. (Photo by Tony Pilkington/Breckenridge Texan)

 


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