TOWNSEND — Locavores, look no further. Fresh, local meat can be had right in town.
Tickets went fast for the pig roast held at the Townsend Rod and Gun Club on June 23.
The 190-pound pig spun on a spit from 8 a.m. until just before 4 p.m.. Two 30-pound turkeys smoked in the next cooker over.
The chef was club member Dennis Martino. The pigs come from his uncle’s farm in Andover and Blood Farm in Groton. All the meat and the butchering is federally inspected, he said.
The turkeys came from Townsend. Mary Letourneau said these two were medium-size birds. She grows about two dozen birds each year and they average 38 pounds.
The larger birds will not fit in the oven. Letourneau usually cooks them on her grill.
The pig roast was a first for the 334-member club. Organizers Letourneau and Roger Rapoza were happy with the turnout; 150 tickets were sold.
It took two to manhandle the spit with the pig off the cooker and onto the carving table.
Martino carefully clipped the wires securing the animal to the spit. Other supporting elements were removed before the spit could be slid out.
Next, the turkeys were removed from their spit at the next table.
A crew of carvers set to work, rapidly reducing the three roasts to piles of fresh meat and bones.
The meal was served buffet-style; baked beans, bread, potato salad and watermelon were also on the menu.
The private club allows people to bring their own alcohol but never serves it at functions, Letourneau said. The liability is too high.
Diners could sit under a colorful tent by the side of the fishing pond or inside the clubhouse where an inside archery range is located.
Others chose to sit pond-side behind the building.
Martino owns six cookers and has something going every weekend during the summer. He built, designed and redesigned the cookers over the years.
The seasonal business is popular and Martino, who owns a concrete flooring business, does not need to advertise the pig roasts. The one year he did, “it was just crazy,” he said.
The club is family-oriented. Young David Babin III, 4, for instance, was willing to try some of the meat, but not the baked beans. He knew all about the club.
“Nanny and Poppy come here fishing,” he said.
Fishing, archery, black powder events and a shooting range are available on the 300-acre property off Emery Road, Letourneau said.
New members must be sponsored by current members. The pig roast was open to all.