Local politicians raise $369 at Rib Fest in dunk tank

By: Patty McAlpin Lincoln News Messenger reporter
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Visitors to the sixth annual Rib Festival Saturday found the coolest seat in the house on a hot day occupied at different times by eight local politicians raising money for Friends of Lincoln Kids. “Five-hundred people on the hour” attended the event, according to Lincoln Councilman Paul Joiner, who was one of the City Council candidates in the dunk tank. Each of the eight participants sat perched in the dunk tank, daring passersby to sink them. They got several takers, netting a total of $369. Rib Festival event organizer Jeff Greenburg said he plans to personally thank dunk participants. Local resident Shirley Russell tried to take down several politicians. One of her targets, Joiner, sank into the tank with a swoosh. Thirty-year resident John Bostic knocked Councilman Stan Nader in the tank several times to the delight of his sons, Steven, 9, and Peter, 5. Bostic, working up an appetite, said his next stop involved buying corn on the cob. Luke McNeel-Caird and his daughters, Claire, 7, and Alyssa, 6, of Lincoln, sat on the sidewalk munching on corn on the cob while their grandfather, Jesse Loneli, watched nearby. “We’re here for lunch,” their father said. The girls, dressed in their Lincoln Youth Soccer uniforms, said they hoped they might get some cotton candy after lunch. “This is a good food selection,” McNeel-Caird said. “It’s better than the Farmers’ Market.” After eating, McNeel-Caird said, he would “make his way down to the cars next.” Classic cars and spiffed-up motorcycles caught the eyes of event-goers. Eddie Chavez, 27, took in the sights with his father, Bryan Gray. “I like seeing the different body types,” said Chavez, who brought a 1965 Barracuda he bought in March. This was the first time Chavez displayed a car at the Rib Festival. “I love classic cars, 70s Mopar,” he said. “My favorite body styles are Challengers and Barracudas. Pinup-model contestant Jessica Grant, alias Marree Cherriz, gave a photographer a wide smile as he flashed photos of her in a red and white 1955 Oldsmobile Super 88 convertible owned by Ted Thompson. Nearby pinup contestant Rebecca Wozniak, 27, who grew up in Lincoln, was all smiles after winning second place. She won a photo shoot with Carrie Guilford. “I’m surprised and thrilled,” said Wozniak, who was dressed in a blue 1950s remake rockabilly dress sporting sleek black cats. “It’s a lot more modern fabric but the same structure as the ‘50s era dresses,” she said of the dress. The winner of the barbecue, Sam Parks’ Mr. Greene’s Back Porch BBQ, took home a recognition plaque and bragging rights. He beat out five other contestants.