Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Fred Smith
Statewide BBQ Tour
In Vance County

The second BBQ of yesterday in the 100 County BBQ Tour of gubernatorial candidate Fred Smtih was held in Vance County. You can read about the first stop in the article below, including a very good Press Release from the Warren County GOP about that event.

After finishing up the Warren County BBQ, Fred made a quick stop at the Littleton Observer for an interview with John Peters, the Editor. Next there was a 45 minute convoy over to Henderson, North Carolina and a meeting with Mike Abramowicz, reporter with the
Henderson Daily Dispatch. Before it was over the meeting expanded to include short talks with Jim Edwards, the publisher and Glenn Craven, the editor of the Daily Dispatch.

Next there was a private meeting with some of the businessmen in Vance County at the Chamber of Commerce. Finally we got to the Vance County BBQ around 6:30 PM after what had already been (as usual for Fred) a long day.

The event was held at the local high school, and due to several other events being held at the same school that night, including some sports events, it was quite a crowd around the school. Some of the students seemed amused by the well dressed people who were finding their way into the cafeteria for the BBQ.

Fred Smith (shown above on the left) spent some time meeting the people who came out and signing his autobiography.

The formal event was kicked off by Phillip Burnette (shown above), Chairman of the Vance County Republican Party who acted as master of ceremonies. The invocation was by Harold Frazier (shown below) .

Deidre Jersey sang the national anthem and led us in the pledge of allegiance.

Then we ligned up to eat. The BBQ was, as it usually is, really great. (North Carolina seems to have at least one or two great BBQ restaurants in every county and Fred's people are good at finding them.)

While we ate, Fred spent his time talking with the people. Fred is really good with people and it is interesting to see how people react to him.

Mike Abramowicz (shown below on the left), reporter for the Henderson Daily Dispatch, interviewed guest Dwight Frazier while he was standing in line to get some of the BBQ.

I ran into an old friend, Jeff Mixon (shown below on the rigth) who is the legislative affairs specialist with the Civitas Insitute, and got a chance to meet his wife, Amanda Mixon. Senate Candiate Chuck Stires (shown below on the left) is with Jeff and his wife .

Chuck (also shown below) was the person invited to introduce Senator Fred Smith to the gathering this night.

Senator Fred Smith spoke of his love for our State of North Carolina, and his belief that government is out of touch with what the majority of people want. He talked about the things that make us great and the things that help us enjoy the freedom of our great nation America. These talks are always a great dialogue, and in Vance County there were a number of questions about illegal immigration and its impact on the future of our nation and state. This issue seems to be getting more and more focus.

Though I have seen Fred make a powerful speech in a more formal environment, these talks are always low key and personal. It is part of what makes them such a great connection between Fred and the people who come out.

The meeting was closed by singing "God Bless America", tonight led by Deidre Jersey (shown below). This is the traditional way that Fred closes his BBQs and it is always a great ending.

Afterwards Fred always takes time to finish signing autographs and talking with those who came to meet him. Fred really lives the theme of his autobiography, "The difference between good and great is a little extra effort.

The Vance County stop on the Fred Smith Statewide BBQ Tour was a resounding success thanks to all the great people who came out.


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