2,100 BBQ chicken servings gobbled up at Barn Bash

Learn why, by every measure, this year’s Parkrose Barn Bash, hosted by the Rossi Family, was the best ever. See Mayor Tom Potter ring the dinner bell, and lots of folks having a good time for a great cause‚

Portland Mayor Tom Potter didn’t have to yell “Come and get it”‚ ringing the dinner bell was enough to line up the diners, hungry for Parkrose Lions’ delicious barbecue chicken.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
While the official count isn’t yet in, hundreds‚ some say thousands‚ of folks from all over the greater Portland area flooded into the Rossi Farms lot for the Tenth Annual Barn Bash on July 14.

“I’m personally really pleased with the attendance,” Joe Rossi told us after the event. “Thanks to the good turnout, and the support of our 30 sponsors, we’ll be able to fund activities for twelve youth groups this year, instead of eleven.”

As many as 2,000 people enjoyed the food and good spirits found at this year’s Parkrose Barn Bash.

Portland’s biggest backyard party
The Barn Bash is an event not much more complicated than a backyard party. Nice people‚ a lot of people‚ come for a great barbecue chicken dinner, to sample craft brews, to enjoy live entertainment, and to dance to live music.

Portland City Commissioner Randy Leonard says he’s impressed with both the scope of the event, and with the barbecued chicken.

First-time guests to the Barn Bash said they were impressed with the dinner. “That really is great barbecued chicken,” commented Portland City Commissioner Randy Leonard.

Using open-pit grills, and their own secret technique of marinating and cooking the chicken, the Parkrose Lions club cooked up 2,100 quarters of juicy, mouth-watering chicken. The all-you-can-eat dinner buffet includes salads, rolls and beans. The, diners came back for a serving of fresh strawberry shortcake with ice cream.

“One of our most valuable contributors are the Parkrose Lions,” said Rossi. “Every year, we get lots of really positive comments about the food.”

The “wild west” comes to life on the realistic old-time Parkrose set.

Whether dancing or listening to the lively country music played by The Last Rodeo Band, when the sun goes down, the barn where they play fills up.

Explosive entertainment
Throughout the evening, scenes depicting the rough-and-tumble days of early Parkrose were portrayed by the Turkey Creek Players. An escape from the town jail, a battle between Union and Rebel soldiers, and loud cannon fire punctuated the evening.

In the barn, The Last Rodeo Band played country tunes that got couples dancing until late in the evening. Many guests took the country line dance lessons offered while the band was taking a break.

The Parkrose Posse presents their “This is an Outrage” Award, to Mid County MEMO reporter Lee Pearlman.

Pearlman arrested; honored
We suspected trouble might be brewing when the Parkrose Posse gathered in the main dining tent, looking for Mid County MEMO reporter Lee Pearlman.  But they had an award for him in their holsters.

“Lee [Pearlman] always writes a nice article for the event and has been a real supporter,” stated Rossi. “He is such a low key guy, but he’s one of our biggest Barn Bash fans.”

2007 Barn Bash Photo Album
If you weren’t there to taste the chicken or hear the music, enjoy these scenes from this year’s Parkrose Barn Bash.

Aldo Rossi is on hand to greet Portland Mayor Tom Potter as he arrives at Rossi Farms.

Dan Saltzman, Liz Burns with Joe Rossi and his daughter Gabrielle.

Members of the Parkrose Sheriff’s Posse enjoy looking tough‚ but this event is so calm, they’ve little to do other than‚ look handsome as they pose!

On the chuck-wagon food line, Ardy Kneeland is serving Karen Borowiec and Richard Voegele.

Enjoying dinner are Robert Murtha and Debra Giles-Murtha.

How many of these Parkrose folks do you recognize at Bob Brown’s table?

Nancy Zuffrea, ExecuTech Suites and Greg Zuffrea, president, East Portland Chamber of Commerce enjoy dinner at their first Barn Bash.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

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