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Ruritans ready for food, fun

Published 8:49pm Saturday, May 4, 2013

The CE&H Ruritan Club is gearing up for its annual fundraiser party May 18, the 14th annual Beer, Bands & BBQ.

To be held at the Ruritan Hall, 8850 Eclipse Drive, the fun event will include music by Main Street Band, out of Smithfield, North Carolina-style barbecue and cold beer.

Jason Gould, the club’s secretary and its co-chair, said the event provides funds toward maintaining the clubhouse, an old school that is also headquarters for the Nansemond River Preservation Alliance and Suffolk River Heritage.

“It requires a lot of upkeep, and the Beer, Bands & BBQ was created to pay for it,” he said, listing the heating, ceilings, floors and kitchen as recent maintenance projects.

“We also rent the clubhouse out when we can.”

The event continues to grow, Gould said. Despite a similar event occurring in Portsmouth the same day, the Eclipse event always draws a large crowd, he said.

“We expect anywhere between 800 and 1,000 people, depending on the weather,” he said.

With one band locked in for the event, Gould joked that maybe “band” should come after “BBQ.” But to fulfill the promise of the title’s plural, he said he’s working to get a Blues Brothers tribute act, adding, “It’s not inked yet.”

The Blues Brothers act was well received at last year’s Driver Days, he said, and he is hopeful of locking it in.

Barbecue at the event, more than 600 pounds of it, is supplied by brothers and club members Richard and “Tank” Lynch.

“There’s never any left over,” Gould said. “At the end, they sell containers for $5.”

Coleslaw is donated by Bubba-N-Franks, he said.

“We’ve got two beer trucks: Budweiser and Miller,” he said, adding the event features security, including identification checks.

“We have never had a problem in the last 14 years,” Gould said.

Kids 12 and under are free, while tickets for everyone else are $25 in advance, at Rio Grande Traders in Driver and Bennett’s Creek Farm Market on Route 17, or $30 at the door.

The fun starts at 3 p.m. and ends at 7 p.m. T-Shirts are $15 each or two for $25.

For more information, contact Jason Gould at 803-8487 or Ron Gould at 538-3512.



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