Tropic Hut At Reno Wings Cook Off

Downtown Reno, Nevad
July 1 - 4, 2011

Five blocks of Virginia Street in downtown Reno are closed off to become the 10th Annual Reno Wings Cook Off.
Attendance was down slightly this year over last year. Apparently, the prolonged slump in our economy caused people to postpone travel plans. The event itself, however, was bigger than ever with 20 Wings Cookers (up from 12 last year) and over 120 other food and merchandise vendors.
There's that festive Tropic Hut stand!
Here's the back side of Tropic Hut. With a tree right there, this area made a nice place to take breaks and relax for a while. Oh, and to snack on wings, of course!
Meet Mari and Derry. They run a jewelry merchandise stand and are often at same events Tropic Hut goes to. In fact, at this event they were right next to us.
The sponsoring casinos get into the wings act, too. This is Silver Legacy's wing cooking stand.
Directly across the street from Silver Legacy's wing cooking stand were these two gorgeous blondes, who were there to entice folks to sign up for Silver Legacy promotions.
What a nice surprise it was to see my old friend David Hurley! He was the bar manager at Harrah's during the time I worked there. Now he's quite happy as the bar manager for Eldorado. Apparently I am not the only one whose expereience at Harrah's was less than pleasant, hehe.
My friend Pamela (one of the sweetest people you'd ever want to meet) and her son, Theo, own two Baskin Robbins stores, one in Reno and one in Sparks. For festivals in the area they also send out this very nice looking trailer.
OMG! It''s...ELVIS!! And he's getting ice cream from the Baskin Robbins trailer!

Nyuck, nyuck, actually his name is Horace and he owns a sun glasses stand. He's a big Elvis fan, obviously, and yes, this is how he looks all the time. His shop's slogan is "Sun Glasses Fit For A King." Get it?
Chicken wings are the theme, but they aren't the only food available at the Wings Cook Off. This is one of the rare moments when the roasted corn stand did not have people waiting in a line.
The highlight entertainment for Monday afternoon was this Motown tribute band. The crowd went crazy when they started their show with "Papa Was A Rolling Stone" and some dazzling dance moves.
The five vocalists in the Motown tribute band brought some serious rhythm and blues funk!
In their matching black suits these guys looked as good as they sounded.
There was plenty of live music at the Reno wings Cook Off. While the Motown tribute show was performing on the main stage, this band was playing classic rock tunes on stage two, a block up Virginia Street.
Famous Dave's is a fairly new barbecue restaurant in Reno. The main menu item at the restaurant is pork ribs, hence the sign about "Hog Heaven." But at the Wings Cook Off they showed they could cook chicken wings, too. Famous Dave's stand was one of the most popular at the event.
This is Sergio, one of the managers of Famous Dave's restaurant, and the guy in charge of their wings stand at Reno Wings Cook Off. Sergio and his fun staff kept me and my staff well fed with chicken wings, and we kept them well supplied with Tropic Hut drinks!
Meet Sherrie, the saucy brunette who applied the sauce to Famous Dave's wings. Freshly cooked chicken wings were dropped into those bowls in front of her, she added the sauce, then everyone stand back! Sherrie didn't use a spoon to mix the wings with the sauce. Oh no, she picked up the entire bowl, sometimes two bowls at once, and tossed those wings! It was amazing to watch.
Dana was the money girl at Famous Dave's wings stand. She took the orders and kept the cookers very busy. Dana told me that on Saturday alone they did over $4,000 in business. Wow, that's a lot of wings!