Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – The Weenie Roast

We don’t have barbecues or cookouts-we have weenie roasts. It doesn’t take much effort: make a bowl of slaw, a pot of chili, open a can of pork-n-beans (or get my sister-n-law to make her famous baked beans), grab a bag of chips, a few packs of hot dogs and buns, pickles, ketchup, mustard, and mayo, get one of the men’s pocketknives to sharpen the sticks, and one of them to build a fire.

Growing up Granny would get so excited when we had a weenie roast-was it the good food? I don’t think so. It was the family sitting around together talking that she liked.

These days we don’t have weenie roasts often, but when one of us calls the other and says “You want to have a weenie roast?” I feel the same excitement Granny used too. I know there’ll be laughter, joking, and talk ranging from Daffy Duck’s use of the word acutrument to people’s extravagant preparation for Armageddon.


Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.


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  • Reply
    May 25, 2011 at 7:19 pm

    Don’t forget the marshmallows! When I was young, we always had a weenie roast on my birthday in June. We invited all of my friends. It was fun and I think everyone looked forward to it. Of course,sometimes we still have weenie roasts.

  • Reply
    Joe Mode
    May 24, 2011 at 10:58 am

    We call it “cooking out” here in Knoxville, at least I believe the locals do. Cooking out can involve any type of meat, but weiner roasts are for just that..weiners.

  • Reply
    May 23, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    Around here we usually call it a cookout, but the eats are the same and the best part is still visiting with folks!

  • Reply
    Luann Sewell Waters
    May 23, 2011 at 10:25 am

    not related to this post, but wanted you to know about this contest….your blog should be a winner!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    May 23, 2011 at 8:45 am

    Tipper, next time I come visit I want a weenie roast!

  • Reply
    kenneth o. hoffman
    May 23, 2011 at 12:05 am

    Tipper: still do, the neighbor call’s and merely say’s were going to have a fire. we grab some wieners and some marshmallos and cha-cha the dog and head out sometime stay till 10:30,tell a few lies,lot of laughs,hope they call tonight. see ya. k.o.h

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    We do all three, depends on what’s being cooked.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    It takes even less than that for us to have a wienie roast. Any time we burn brush we pull out a few hot dogs or marshmallows. The other stuff is just extra when we have company. Hot dogs & marshmallows are enough for the family to have a lot of fun.

  • Reply
    Sherie Rowe
    May 22, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    As a matter of fact, we had such a weenie roast today. Hot dogs, chili, slaew, birthday cake, family and friends!

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 6:32 pm

    We’ve been going to Buck Creek to roast weenies since I was a little kid. Sometimes if I am lucky no one is in the spot that we always go where the creek is so wide and flat. People used to put up their camps for the summer before the Park Rangers came along and restricted camping to 10 days in one spot. For a long time my brother in law and his friend worked on roads as far away as Atlanta, and my sister tended to camp most of the summer, alone with her Bible and her shotgun, only coming occasionally, like for Sunday Church. On Saturdays nights usually we sat around the fire and roasted our weenies.

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 6:25 pm

    Jim-Its Daffy’s version-of course you have to say it with a duck accent too : ) The language of Daffy Duck is what our Yale boy has been studying on recently : )
    Blind Pig The Acorn
    Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk
    All at

  • Reply
    Kent Lockman
    May 22, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    BBQ was prepared in the house, grilling was done to steak on Sunday noon on the grill, but weenie roasts meant friends, family, and great food. My family had weenie roasts all the time when I was a kid. I continued weenie roasts with my two kids right up until they left home for college. My wife and I now have weenie roasts loving the smells of the country, the taste of the roasted weenies and marshmallows, and the beautiful night sky’s stars and the quiet of a country evening. Thanks Tipper for helping dredge up some fine memories.

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    I only recently found your blog and am thoroughly enjoying it. I grew up, and continue to live, in the foothills of the Ozarks. Many of my memories are similar to the things you have posted about. Your music makes my heart sing. I write about things I remember from the 1940s when I grew up, quilting, and farming. Thanks for these wonderful stories.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    May 22, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Tipper–Weenie roasts are cheap, cordial, and plain out fun. Your mention of them makes me realize it has been years since I enjoyed that fine example of haute cuisine, a wiener cooked on a stick over an open fire.
    That being said, you’ve got to enlighten me. What in the dickens does acutrument mean? Or is that Daffy Duck’s rendition of accoutrement? Obviously either my vocabulary or knowledge of comics (or both) is lacking. Of course you have to realize that I had a privileged youth. I grew up without a television.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    We still have weenie roasts, and as a matter of fact, we’re having one today! Hot dogs, Granny Mandy’s cole slaw and baked beans, and s’mores. Like you all, we love the family time just to talk and enjoy each other’s company. I just know we’ll be talking about the world not ending yesterday and lots of ribbing and joking! Wishing you all a great Sunday.
    P.S. Granny Mandy also made an apple pie!! 🙂

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Barbecue is a …national sport in Cyprus just after football! :-). It’s called souvla and it consists of large pieces of meat cooked on a long skewer over a charcoal barbecue.Traditional souvla is made from the neck and shoulder of lamb or pork. The meat is cut on the bone into chunks about the size of a medium onion. It must be placed on the charcoal in such a way that its weight is evenly distributed, so that it will rotate evenly on the spit. Souvla is what Cypriots choose to eat on all high days and holidays.

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    We have cookouts around here and I think that is a just modern day weiny roast.
    I like the idea of a weiny roast like you have. We have bon fires often here and I think the next one will be a weiny roast. And I’ll get everyone to bring something. Thanks for the idea, Tipper!

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    I enjoy a good winnie roast too.
    Seems like the blacker the better
    for me. Just give me a squeezer
    full of mustard and I don’t need
    any bread. But you’re right, its
    family and friends that really make the roast. Soon as I get over
    this distemper, I’m going to the
    beautiful Nantahala River and try
    and roast a wienny and you know
    I’ll have rainbow trout for

  • Reply
    lynn legge
    May 22, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    i agree with juana .. its the family and togetherness that makes any kind of cook out. or weenie roast the best times in our life. and many memories to remember. cherish today.. as tomorrow comes quickly. much love and ladybug hugs to all 🙂
    p.s. and i like my weenies well done and dark as possible

  • Reply
    Pat in east TN
    May 22, 2011 at 11:10 am

    We have a spot towards the back of our property where we cook out, anything from weenies and burgers to just some-mores. We have a fire ring and a picnic table and it’s secluded, so we’re in our own little world having a blast with family and friends.

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 11:09 am

    I would love to do a weinie roast, have not been to one in years, maybe 15 i think, the last one was on the church property before we built the church, at night, freezing cold (52 is freezing in FL) and a big fire, and lots of hotdogs and fun. i like my husbands hotdogs on the grill. he splits the hotdog,lays sharp cheese in the slice and wraps a slice of bacon around it puts a tooth pic in to hold it and puts in on the grills. now i am starving from reading and writing.

  • Reply
    Just Jackie
    May 22, 2011 at 10:27 am

    Wienie Roasts !!!!!!! Every year when we cleared out the blackberry bushes we would make a big pile and set fire to it. My mom would bring down the hot dogs and buns. Nothing fancy. We always had red pop, too. Toasted marshmallows for dessert. Miss that so much.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    May 22, 2011 at 10:01 am

    When growing up as a member of the Girl Scouts, we had weenie roasts…At home we only had a weenie roast when we went fishing…no fires allowed where we lived at that time…
    Now we say a cookout..or lets grill out…and the weenies and burgers are cooked on the grill…
    The bar-b-que term is used if we are bar-b-queing ribs for Fathers Day or all day job..
    or we still call it that if we are using the smoker for turkey or roast..figure!
    The weenie roast term is only used today when we go camping over the evening fire, weiners, marshmellows and s’mores..yum.
    I miss a good old fashioned weenie roast..with sharpened sticks instead of wires..
    One of the worst burns I got as a child was a dripping hot marshmellow that fell off the stick..I got over it real quick with a “rub of butter” and with tears streaming down went on to roast some more, cause those weiner roasts were far and few between…
    Thanks Tipper

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 9:28 am

    I always loved weenie roasts! Most of the time when I was growing up there wasn’t money to have a bbq. So weenies and marshamallows over a fire in the back yard was a real treat. Thanks for bringing back some great memories for me!

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    May 22, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Sounds like so much fun! We haven’t done that except when camping and not much then. Going to start a new tradition!

  • Reply
    Canned Quilter
    May 22, 2011 at 9:14 am

    This is the time of year that we clear and clean land. A burning stump is always the start of a good weenie roast and we have already enjoyed several. We still have barbeques but nothing like gathering around a fire and watching the stars and cooking weenies and roasting marshmallows : )

  • Reply
    May 22, 2011 at 9:02 am

    I liked this post so much that when I return to Spain, I plan on doing “weenie roasts”!
    Where I am from we do PAELLA for our family gatherings (IN SPAIN. DAY 12. MY FAMILY!!!) It’s amazing that no matter what the food is,or the culture… family is what makes the day!!
    Love your blog!

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