Cranking up the heat: 2 BCT Paratroopers compete in DA Level of the Connelly Competition
November 18, 2008
How does a Field Kitchen Team that's already a champion keep their legacy going' By adding some new twists to their old playbook and taking on several other Field Kitchen Team champions in the Super Bowl of the Army food service.
"There are four other opponents and we're trying to come out on top and be the best," said Warrant Officer Darryl Thomas, the 2nd Brigade Combat Team food service advisor. "I'm sure we will be the best."
The Field Kitchen Team from the 2 BCT, 82nd Airborne Division competed in Department of the Army-level Philip A. Connelly Competition on November 13, after winning the U.S. Forces Command-level competition in July.
The Connelly competition is an Army wide food service competition where different units compete to have the best field kitchen or best dining facility. The four other posts that were competing in the final round for best field kitchen were Ft. Lewis, Wash., Ft. Irwin, Calif., Korea, and Japan.
"This is a tough competition at this level. This is where the best of the best compete," said Sgt. Maj. Randy St. Cyr, one of the judges from the FORSCOM-level of the competition who came back to observe the 2 BCT "Falcon" Field Kitchen Team. "The Soldiers have put in a lot of hard work."
One of the new ingredients that the Falcon Field Kitchen Team brought to the table was an improved lunch menu complete with a new signature dessert: the "Falcon Apple," which is a baked, spiced apple that Sgt. Orlando Serna, a Mexico native, created.
"Every brigade needs a signature item an item that represents what the brigade is all about," said Thomas. "Sgt. Serna created an apple with his own ingredients, it's a great item."
The judges certainly agreed with Thomas. Serna received one of the two special recognition awards from the judges for his apple.
Like any hard-working, popular sports team, the 2 BCT, Field Kitchen Team was not with out its fans. The 75 hungry Paratroopers that the Field Kitchen Team served a breakfast and lunch to quickly became cheerleaders for the team.
"The burritos are awesome," said Spc. Melissa Cruz, a Houston native, during breakfast.
By the end of the competition even the judges were big fans of the Falcon Field Kitchen Team.
"You didn't disappoint, I can honestly say 2nd Brigade looked good," said Sgt. Maj. James Lee, a DA-level judge.
Even though the winner of the competition won't be announced until December, the judges assured the 2 BCT, Field Kitchen Team that regardless of the outcome, they still have a lot to boast about.
"Before I came here someone said to me, 'Man, those guys at Fort Bragg, all they do is brag,'" said Thomas Kuch, one of the judges, while addressing the team at the end of the day.
"Well after today I can see why, you guys did an outstanding job," Kuch said.