[This is a multimedia post, maybe the first ever for LTHforum, with sound clips mixed in. If you don't have access to any speakers, then what can I say, some information will go missing.]
Raccoon feed: The 77th Annual Coon Feed, in memory of Tom McNulty, will be held at 5 p.m. (last) Saturday (of January, every year), at the Delafield American Legion Post No. 196, 333 Lapham Peak Road, Delafield. The cost is $10, $5 for children. Meals will be served on a first-come-first-served basis until the meat is gone. Proceeds go to Delafield American Legion youth Programs.
Some days when I think about my wee place in this world called LTHforum, I feel like I have a purpose
. It's not that I'm competitive or have to spend a lot of money, as if you'd be impressed
. I know I am in it all for the taste, fun and comradery.
When I pull out the faithful chariot
for another exploratory mission, I feel I cannot return
until my mission is done. Whenever I need inspiration, I look no further than LTHforum.com
, which is full of possibilities. Yesterday was no exception, I knew from reading Amata's post
I had found my destination du jour
: Raccoon Dinner!
Well, I am somewhat disappointed some of my comrades bailed on me. I guess they were hoping I'd come to my senses
or at least throw in a treat
. However, when I am on a mission
, I know I only want the faithful
and those who have been there since the beginning. So I brought my Mother who thinks I can do anything
We arrived to our destination with only one obstacle: an expressway was built interrupting the road we needed. Naturally my Mother jumped to conclusions
while I led the way just guessing where to go next. Naturally, just when you need them, the police
cannot be found. I finally found the American Legion Hall in the middle of a residential neighborhood where the big clue was a full parking lot. I was glad it was night as I wanted to be regarded as a local and not someone from Illinois
, so I wore my dark blue parka instead of my red Eskimo parka.
I walked in two hours after the party began inquiring if they had any 'Coon left. "Is all you want is 'coon?" "Yes!" The guy sized me up and advised "Great, the ticket is half off at $5 because all we have left is'coon, brown gravy and bread
." I learned if we had come earlier, then we would have had mashed potatoes, sauerkraut and stuffing. Oh, there was ham available for the nervous. Though they forgot to inform me there were carrots and celery on the table for that special homey touch
My first and last exposure to Raccoon didn't leave a favorable impression. I was very favorably impressed by my raccoon dinner last night just upon first sight:
The meat didn't look dried out like my first raccoon experience. It also had a bit of juiciness, yet some crustiness as I prefer varying textures. Once on my plate, I did use a bit of the canned brown gravy, which was the stuff that makes Meatloaf Blue Plate specials legendary:
Raccoon is a boney rascal, so I had to gnaw, chew and suck to get every wee bit to leave a plate of bones honoring the cooks:
While we were eating, they had several raffles featuring summer sausages
. Since the crowd was turning over, so did the lottery tickets, so we bought three tickets for each of the summer sausages available. If you didn't buy a ticket, then you could pull the winning ticket. Sadly, we didn't win a summer sausage.
After dinner was over, I was directed to the gentlemen who prepared the dinner. I naturally asked Hammond's question, "Where can you find someone to butcher a raccoon?" They gave me the politest quizzical look possible
. "Young lady, all of us are hunters. We carefully field dressed the raccoons, then later cut them up."
I then recounted my first raccoon experience was dreadful, yet their raccoon was a completely different and flavorful experience. They beamed with pride with my sincere compliments. They said in the past they had visitors from as far away as Valparaiso, Indiana come just for their dinner. Unfortunately, they can no longer make the trip. As fine and fit as these gentlemen talking were, obviously veterans of World War 2, they still possess stamina as they cooked 60 raccoons for this event. So when they discussed next years dinner, there were some caveats suggesting to double check it will occur. Though I certainly hope a tradition of 77 years will not expire anytime soon.
We left the warm glow of the American Legion Hall vowing to return next year. Safely behind the wheel of the chariot, I kept thinking how close and yet so far away
this wonderful raccoon dinner was from home.
Of course, once I told people how wonderful this dinner was, then the excuses, excuses, excuses
started piling up. I already have a raincheck
from Gary for next year. Rest assured I am here for the long haul