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Barbie Butz is an independent columnist for The Atascadero News and Paso Robles Press; you can email her at

Hallelujah! I do believe things are getting back to normal. Even warmer weather feels normal! Right? I’m excited to just be able to “complain” about the heat.

I’m referring to normal things like the Templeton 4th of July Parade, organized and sponsored by Templeton Rotary, and the 4th of July activities in the Templeton Community Park after the parade, with food, drinks, music, and games for kids, organized by Templeton Chamber of Commerce. Those activities start at 10:30 a.m. with the parade and continue during the day.

More of our normal events that are back include the 4th of July Bluegrass Freedom Festival that has been renamed the 4th of July Music Festival. Sponsored by the Atascadero Colony Days Committee and located at Atascadero Lake Park, starting at 4 p.m. Again, there will be food, drinks, and activities for all. Of course, the big treat will be listening to great Americana Music. What could be better to help you celebrate America!

Another event returning on Saturday, Jul. 10, is the Atascadero Historical Society’s popular Summer Potluck at the Colony House Museum starting at 5:00 p.m. It’s a tradition, and the food is wonderfully delicious! Just remember to bring something really good to share!


Tonight, Quota of Atascadero is bringing back their very popular Bunco Night event they have presented for so many years. This night of “Bunco Fun” will take place at the Atascadero Grange Hall, located at 5035 Palma Avenue in Atascadero, from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 and include munchies, beverages, and goodies!
Contact Pam Meyer at (805)466-1588 for reservations. Proceeds will be used for the organization’s philanthropic work in the community.

Donn Clickard, Director of the Greyhound Foundation, sent me the following message: “The summer track meets are back beginning Jul. 7. Pass the word!”

For a full schedule of Foundation events, visit

I know that most of you can locate more information about these events and the organizations that put them on. Please use their websites for more details.

Summer means barbecue, and I think this recipe will become a favorite.

Tri-Tip with Red Wine Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients for Sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1/3 cup dry red wine
½ cup ketchup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/8 teaspoon liquid smoke


1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1½ to 1¾ pounds tri-tip roast (1-2 roasts), trimmed of all but ¼ inch fat
2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions for Sauce:
Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, cumin and chipotle powder; stir 1 minute. Add wine; simmer 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients; stir and simmer 2 minutes. If made ahead, refrigerate up to 2 days.

Directions for Tri-Tip:
Preheat grill to medium. Mix garlic powder salt, and pepper. Brush both sides of meat with oil and sprinkle with seasoning mixture. Press in to adhere. Grill 5 minutes per side. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and grill, brushing with barbecue sauce, turning every 10 minutes for 30 minutes more or until meat thermometer inserted into thickest part of meat registers 125 to 130 degrees for medium-rare. Transfer meat to cutting board and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Cut crosswise into very thin slices.