Arriving on Avery Island in style...
The Southern Delta Region held its 30th Anniversary Showoff October 16, 17, and 18 on Avery Island, Louisiana, home of The McIlhenny Company that makes the world famous Tabasco Sauce.
Forty Members and guests, including twelve Members and 2 guests from the Texas Region enjoyed the SDR’s premiere annual event. This year’s hosts were Tony and Jeanie Simmons who live on the island. Tony is a senior executive of the McIlhenny Company and owns a 1931 RR Springfield PI that his father purchased in 1957.
To kick things off in style, a reception was held Friday evening at The Arch on Avery Island. This was an outdoor event in the beautifully maintained Jungle Gardens area. The weather cooled on Friday and remained exceptionally pleasant the entire weekend.
Saturday morning Tony gave us a personal tour explaining the Tabasco production facilities from pepper mash preparation, fermentation, bottling to packaging. Tabasco is distributed worldwide to over 160 countries
After a visit to the Company store, the group moved to the front lawn of the McIlhenny Corporate offices where a scrumptious lunch was served on the veranda. We were feted with an overabundance of great food and refreshments making the judges reluctant to return to their appointed task. Eighteen cars were on display providing a fitting complement to the front lawn. Portions of the buildings were built in the early 1900s for offices and the original production facility. These buildings are exclusively offices today and have been modernized inside while maintaining the classic exterior. New building additions from the 1980s have been blended in exceptionally well resulting in a magnificent architectural presentation.
After judging there was an optional driving tour of the Jungle Gardens through the beautifully manicured and lush vegetation preserved on the island.
The Saturday evening Awards Banquet was held at the home of Tony and Jeanie Simmons where we feasted on charbroiled oysters, Cajun shrimp Creole and cheese cake. Texas Region Member John Sweney won the Best of Show Trophy.
To close a delightful weekend on Avery Island, Tony and Jeanie hosted Sunday brunch at the McIlhenny Corporate office executive dining room. We all departed exceptionally pampered and well fed. This weekend’s event will be a tough one to follow. Thanks to Tony and Jeanie Simmons for providing a terrific weekend at a great location.
John Sweney photos - http://johnandmike.smugmug.com/Cars/Shows/RROC-Avery-Island/10015254_xhXM4#685386218_JkETa
Sneed Adams photos - http://sneedadams.smugmug.com/RROC-PIX-2009/SDR-Showoff-at-Avery-Island/10012676_4LPkE#P-1-24