Monday, April 05, 2010


Our AA community is mourning the loss of one of it’s oldest members. He had 49 years of sobriety and was an inspiration to young and old. But his fame goes way beyond the halls of Alcoholic’s Anonymous.

Randall was the undisputed King of the Sardine Festival … a yearly celebration that he founded in 1993 in the small town of Aberdeen, North Carolina.

He had a business across the street from the town park and, as the story goes, his wife insisted that he go there to eat whenever his lunch consisted of sardines. She couldn’t stand the smell of them !

Randall’s favorite lunch was a can of sardines, crackers, a Moon Pie and an RC Cola. Day after day he would take his lunch to the park and it wasn’t long before he had a following. He was great company and these were his fans. Pretty soon they were all eating the same lunch and the word spread. Music was added to the mix and good natured teasing and laughter abounded.

Each year the crowd grew and now the sardines are provided by Maine’s Port Clyde Sardine Co, Moon Pies from the makers in Chattanooga, Tenn. and RC Colas from a bottler in Raeford, NC.
The event is free to the public but donations are accepted and are turned over to the Aberdeen Parks & Recreation Dept. to defray the cost of it’s youth baseball programs.

Randall had not been well enough to head up the event for the last few years but he always attended and I’m pretty sure that he still got the first kiss from the newly elected Sardine Queen!

You are gone but far from forgotten, Randall. Long live the Sardine King.


Blogger Diana said...

Oh I'm so sorry to hear about your friends passing Ginnie. His lunch sounded perfect to me! Love Di ♥

4:49 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

That's too bad, Ginnie, but he will live on in the festival. My dad loved sardines, but I couldn't be in the room when he ate

4:18 AM  
Blogger possum said...

sorry you lost a friend. 'Fraid I would be with the wife - can't take sardines! BUT to each his own. Sounds like a fun group, anyway.
Loved your picture of the elegant 4 seater... we still have out old 2 seater out back... ancient Persian rug on the floor... modern seat with lid, hook for the lantern... Comes in handy when the power goes out for a long time.

5:33 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

I am sorry to hear this. I am sure that all will remember him at the festival. I don't eat many sardines but could go for an RC Cola and a Moon pie!

7:51 AM  
Blogger Chancy said...

What a combo. RC Moon Pie and sardines. It actually sounds yummy.


12:53 PM  
Blogger azahar said...

I just love canned sardines with steaming white rice!

Having studied in a boarding school for 8 long years taught me the goodness of canned sardines.

I also adore freshly caught still-smelling-of-the-sea sardines, either deep-fried or roasted to perfection.

Roasted sardines is just delicious if eaten with steaming glutinous rice sprinkled with freshly grated coconut! Try them.

7:09 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

I cringe but good on him for rallying the troops.

5:10 AM  
Blogger Cazzie!!! said...

Yumm, we all love our sardines in this house. I never eat them jst before going to work, lol.

5:07 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

Ginnie, re your comment about poinsettias: I never do anything special to them. Once I bring them in the house, they stay in the same window until Spring. I don't keep them in darkness or anything. It's a puzzle!

7:15 AM  
Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

What a lovely account of one man's delight being tranformed into a community bonding festival. Who would have thought the lowly sardine could raise up royalty.

His conquest over alcoholism will continue to inspire for years to come.

5:44 AM  

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