Buds? Burgers? Event raises money to worthwhile causes

“Take a bite out of that, my boy,” Golden Meadow native Frank Boura said this past weekend, holding out a dish filled with about 10 hamburger bites — each cut perfectly to size. “It’s the best thing you’ll eat all day.”

Boura’s words weren’t far off from the truth, although the dishes cooked and served all around him weren’t too shabby, either.

This weekend marked the 4th Annual Bud and Burgers Championships, an event hosted by the Houma Sunrise and Houma-Terrebonne Rotary Clubs.

Hosted at the spacious, beautiful Southdown’s Buquet Pavilion and Grounds, the event featured 25 teams — all vying to be considered the best burger chef around. In the background was music and the event also featured fun and games for people of all ages.

Oh, and the best part — all proceeds went to the two rotary clubs for their charitable causes throughout the year.

“You pay $10 and you eat as much as you want and it’s all for a good cause,” said David Landry, an event organizer. “Where else can you beat that on a warm, sunny Saturday afternoon on Father’s Day weekend? I have the answer. You can’t.”

Landry has a point.

There was food o’plenty at the event with workers at all 25 tents holding out trays — like Boura’s — asking you to taste their finely crafted cuisine.

At the end of the day, winners were crowned by an expert team of judges. Students from the Nicholls Culinary School picked the three best burgers of the 25 teams.

From there, celebrity judges DJ Rhett, Jason “The Cajun Ninja” Derouen and Nicholls State University President Dr. Jay Clune crowned the best bites of the day.

Event organizer Paul Labat said this year’s event has grown, featuring more teams than ever before.

“It’s just a great day,” Labat said. “People in the community know and trust that when we put this on, you’re going to come by and have a great time.”

Mart Black was in charge of logistics for the event. He and Labat said the volunteerism community members showed to help out was “inspiring.”

Both also thanked Southdown Plantation for their hospitality and work to help make the event a success.

“They always say, ‘It takes an army,’” Labat said. “Well, we have that — an army.”

“What you see here today is the product of a lot of hard work and a lot of diligence from a lot of people,” Black added.

But at the end of the day, it’s about the food, right?

Each team had to supply 50-75 burgers cut into 1/4 quarter slices for sampling to create 200-250 samples each.

Doing quick math, we multiply 250 samples times 25 teams. That means there were more than 6,000 slivers of ground beef grilled to perfection passed out at the day, which was blessed with great weather — overcast skies and warm, but manageable conditions.

Organizers said there was national interest in the event, including an attendee from both Maine and St. Louis, among other places around the country.

“This is one of the best days of the year,” Houma native and 2019 attendee Louis Collins said. “It’s a huge, all-you-can-eat barbecue for $10. What more could you want?”

“We are having a great time,” Schriever woman Alice Hunter added. “And to know that everything made today goes to charitable causes — it just makes the food taste oh, so much better!” •


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