This weekend is the K of C BBQ in Quincy.
This year is the 70th year for the event that always draws thousands to Quincy's Knights of Columbus campus.
There's a great deal of history behind the BBQ, that few people probably even know about...until now.
Carnival rides, raffles, and of course BBQ...all staples at the Knights of Columbus BBQ, but this event didn't just happen by accident. It has a long, interesting history. Bill Anderson is somewhat of a history buff, and really enjoys Quincy and Adams County history. Last year he was at the BBQ when someone asked him a question he didn't know the answer to. He tried to find the answer by asking someone else who had been in the organization longer than he. That person didn't know the answer either.
Bill Anderson says, "For some strange reason, I decided that it would be pretty cool to have a souvenir program or booklet that detailed the history of the Knights of Columbus BBQ."
And so Bill took the idea and ran with it.
Anderson says, "I didn't know how to do it, to be honest with you. I just started putting down stuff on paper and filling in gaps and interviewing people and asking for memorabilia and stuff from people at the club that they might have."
Luckily, people came forward, and Bill was able to get his hands on some stuff from 30, 40, even 50 years ago. He also interviewed a lot of people, and spent a lot of time in the reference library reading old newspaper articles about the BBQ. After a year of hard work, he has a finished booklet. In the process, Bill says he learned an unbelievable amount of information about the BBQ.
Andersons says, "I learned why it started, how it started, when it started. All of that was very interesting, especially up through about 1949. I learned the prizes we gave away. I was not aware that we gave away three or four cars every year."
There were also some years the BBQ wasn't held. The Knights of Columbus here in Quincy paid to print 1500 copies of the booklet. Each paid member of the organization will get one. The rest will be sold for five dollars at the BBQ.
The funny thing about all of this, remember the booklet was spawned by a question Bill Anderson didn't know the answer to.
We asked if he found the answer while doing all the research, and he said he doesn't even remember what that question was.
He's just glad to get the history of the BBQ down on paper, so next time there's a question like that, he knows where to look to find the answer.
Click here to read more from The Quincy Herald-Whig's Rodney Hart.
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