Stand togetherPublished 9:39pm Tuesday, August 20, 2013
The concession stand at Escambia Academy’s Bachelor Field sits silent now, but in less than a month it will awaken with the sounds of hungry patrons and the smoky smell of grilled meat.
Concession stands are a huge part of the Friday-night festivities that surround football, and Canoe is no different.
For the past several years, Sharon Smith, Jason Hiebert and Jimmy Woods have teamed up together with a group of other volunteers to dispatch hot dogs, sausage dogs, hamburgers and frozen pickle juice to hungry football fans.
“It’s like a big family,” Smith said of the concession-stand volunteers. “It gets pretty hectic, but everybody works really well together.”
Hiebert and Woods man the grill, which means about a six-hour commitment starting on Friday afternoon from 4 to 10 p.m.
“We mainly get everything going,” Hiebert said.
Once the game starts it gets busy. “On a good Friday” the stand will go through 150-200 hot dogs, 100-125 hamburgers and 50-60 sausage dogs, Hiebert said.
“Most of the time it sells out,” he said. “Very rarely do we have anything left over.”
He said business stays steady throughout the year, but ramps up for important rivalry games, like against Clarke Prep and during the homecoming game.
“From about 4 to 9:30 it’s wide open,” he said.
In addition to the staples, like hamburgers and hot dogs, the stand also serves chicken strips and chicken sandwiches, marinated in lemon pepper, Woods said.
“We have a lot of people talk about how good (the food) is,” Woods said.
The stand also serves more unexpected items, like Icees and frozen pickle juice, Smith said.
“The kids love it,” Smith said of the frozen pickle juice. It’s sour, but hey, it’s cold.”
All three volunteers said they felt like volunteering was the right thing to do.
“I wanted to do everything I could to help my child’s school,” Smith said.
Woods echoed Smith’s comments.
“I want to meet people,” he said. “If my daughter is there, I’m there.”