Have a Picnic. Win a Cow. The 2011 Grokfeast Challenge.

It’s cow time. US Wellness has long been a favorite meat spot for MDA readers. A couple years ago they donated pemmican and the popular 5 gallon bucket of fat. Last year they went whole hog. And by hog, I mean cow. And they’re doing it again this year. US Wellness has generously offered up a cow to the winners of today’s contest, the Grokfeast Challenge.

For those of you with raised eyebrow, they won’t actually be delivering a mooing, cud chewing, udder dangling live cow to your doorstep. But you will receive the delicious meat that once was that cow. And I’m not just talking about a bucket of chuck. The winners will receive sirloin, brisket, short ribs, back ribs, rib-eye steaks, T-bone steaks, NY strip steaks, Delmonico steaks, filets, bottom round roasts, center cut roasts, chuck, tongue, liver, heart, kidney, beef tallow, marrow bones, beef stock, and an oxtail. Hundreds of pounds of bovine, all grass fed, grass finished, totaling somewhere in the region of $1600 in retail value. Check out this Grass Fed Goodness video where you can watch your prize/meal grazing around in sweet Missouri pastures. And if you haven’t already hit up the US Wellness blog and newsletter, do it now to be the first to learn of sales, discounts and promotional offers. Speaking of promotional offers, use promo code: uswmeats at U.S. Wellness to get a 15% discount on any order under 40 lbs (excludes sale items, volume discounts and bulk boxes). The code is active until October 31.

But winning won’t be easy. It’ll take work. And friends…

To Win the Cow, Host a Grokfeast

What’s a Grokfeast? It’s a picnic! A Primal Picnic. It involves three things:

  • People: At least eight.
  • A Feast: Food for those people. Primal food.
  • A Primal Activity: Fun for those people. Primal fun.

What exactly constitutes “Primal fun?” Any group form of Primal Play could work, like Ultimate Frisbee, a group hike, or Grok Tag. But less traditional options are welcomed as well. Maybe your group wants to shop a farmers’ market before the feast, or build the picnic table you eat the feast on, or host the feast on top of Half Dome. The idea is to capture the Primal spirit. Because going Primal doesn’t have to be a solo operation. Health isn’t a man alone on a treadmill; it’s a group of people enjoying each other’s company, eating healthy food, and maybe breaking a little sweat.

Check out last year’s winning Grokfeast, and all the rest for ideas:

How to Enter the Contest…

Other than having a great time, you’ll need to email me a few of your Grokfeast highlights. For a valid entry, the following are required…

  1. A list of participants. There’s no upper limit, but the minimum is eight.
  2. A list of dishes made for the feast and one recipe of one of those dishes (preferably the tastiest).
  3. Photos of the Grokfeast, including at least one group shot, one shot of the feast, one shot of the recipe dish, and one shot of your Primal activity. Of course, you aren’t limited to four photos. The more pics you send us, the better!
  4. A summary of the day. Tell us how it all went down, did something taste great? Taste awful? What was your Primal activity? Was it enjoyable? A complete failure? Did hilarity ensue? Must be at least two paragraphs. Can easily be more. But use brevity to your advantage. Writing a 15,000 word summary won’t give you a better chance at winning than someone who writes a single, well written, entertaining page.
  5. OPTIONAL: Video of the Grokfeast. It’s not required, but certainly couldn’t hurt.

Finally, be creative! Other than keeping it Primal, there are no limitations on how to have your picnic. Did you convince your entire group to go barefoot? Did you make up your own Primal hunting/gathering game? Is your main dish a Grok-shaped meat cake? Did you have one final water balloon fight before the cold set in? Did you realize the cold had already set in and shivered miserably while building a campfire (to cook your meat on)? Did someone trap, skin, and cure a wild boar hide to use as a picnic blanket? Okay, that might be a little extreme.

But there really aren’t too many restrictions on how to do this. Whether during the day or night, by the ocean or on the roof of a parking garage, at a park, or even in Milwaukee, the possibilities are endless. And it’s not a numbers game. With coworkers, gym buddies, your college dorm cluster, eight people or eighty, the winner isn’t the group with the most people, but the group that throws the coolest Grokfeast. If your friends are all busy, remember there’s a forum filled with other Primal folks who might be in your area.

Once you’ve had your fun and gathered up the evidence, email it to me.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Include “Grokfeast Submission” in the subject line of your email. I receive hundreds of emails a day. If the subject line isn’t correct, there’s a chance I may miss your submission entirely. You can attach pictures or Word docs to the email. If you made a video, please include a link to the YouTube or Vimeo page.

Deadline for Submission:

October 3, midnight, Pacific Standard Time. That’s right, less than three weeks away. I said it wasn’t easy, so hustle!

How a Winner is Chosen:

While I’m not sure how many entries I’ll end up receiving, I’m going to try to publish as many as I can, if not all of them. Entries will be posted during the Reader-Created Content Week, the week of Oct. 3. Semi-finalists will be chosen by me and the Worker Bees later that week. Readers will then have a chance to vote on their favorite. The winner will be announced by the end of the Challenge, Oct. 11.

Fine Print:

  1. The beef will be shipped to one address. It is up to the participants to divide the beef up however they choose (and for those of you thinking about hoarding the beef and not telling your other participants, keep in mind your Grokfeast will be published live on a blog that gets millions of page views a month. They might find out.).
  2. Cow prize not available to residents outside the U.S.. In the event of a non-US team winning, a prize of equal value will be sent as substitute.
  3. Cow prize is not a living, breathing cow. It is a large quantity (over 200 lbs) of various meats that represent most of the edible parts of a cow.
  4. MDA reserves the right to publish any or all material submitted. MDA also reserves the right to make edits to any videos submitted.
  5. Only one entry per group. Only one person needs to submit the entry. That person will be used as the sole contact for establishing shipping/delivery details of the winning prize.
  6. I will be encouraging the winning team to hold a second meet-up for the cow delivery. I want to see all that meat being doled out and enjoyed!
  7. Depending on the number of entries, I reserve the right to adjust how and when the entries will be published and/or voted on. All rules subject to change.

To track all the contests visit the 2011 Primal Blueprint 30-Day Challenge Contest Page for daily updates.

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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127 thoughts on “Have a Picnic. Win a Cow. The 2011 Grokfeast Challenge.”

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  1. did this last year with some random colo primals who never met before. We had such an awesome time! and the food was glorious.
    would gladly do that again!

    1. Hey Peggy. I’m going to try to get some primals here in Denver together from the Denver Paleo meetup. Join the group or shoot me an email if you want to come down and join us. I’m thinking October 1st.

      1. thanks for invite! I’m sadly out of town that wknd (not too sad – as on a cruise). all my wknds are “booked” b4 deadline… might have to do my own local week-night thang, or pass on this one.

  2. Sweet, I can’t wait!

    I order my lard from Wellness Meats, the entire content of the bucket smells like grass 🙂

  3. Damn! I have no primal friends.

    Anyone in the Phoenix area want to host a Grokfest for me to attend?

    1. Yes! But we’ll need to figure out where…

      I’m kind of new in town (moved from Tucson ~2mos ago for a job) so I need suggestions! At least the weather’s making a turn for the better so far this month.

      I don’t have many friends in town either, mostly just my fiancee.

      1. I have no idea where for anything really – I just started primal so recently that I haven’t really begun to explore options. I know there are lots of local parks and stuff – but that’s about the sum of my knowledge!

  4. While I am not eligible to win “your” cow, as I live in Canada, I just wanted to share that I just bought half of my own cow, as well as half a lamb and half a pig….all from a local farm down the road from me, all grown and raised naturally and without drugs. I now have a freezer full of beef, chicken and lamb, just waiting to be eaten all year! It’s awesome…

    I actually saw my cow at our local fair as it was being auctioned off (it was a steer raised to be sold for meat), so took a picture of my cow so I could honour it at the first feast. I will do a Grokfeast with my friends using my wonderful local animals to be in the spirit of the event, and wish everyone else good luck with the contest!!

    1. I am also in Canada, whereabouts are you? Where did you find your meat? I have been looking for a practical way to get large quantities of grassfed beef, chicken etc in the Southern Ontario/Toronto area

    2. Where in Canada are you? I’m in Vancouver. Bought a cow share recently in order to get raw milk…it’s great! But now I own part of a live cow! Would be happy to share if you’re in the area.

      1. Hi there Tgreen and Suzanne. I am in the Victoria area, and my co-worker lives near a farmer in Saanich who raises the sheep and chickens, the pig is from a farm in Sooke and a kid from Saanich raised the cow! Sorry…a bit fair from Tgreen for sure, and being on the island also makes it difficult for Suzanne. Good luck in finding a local farmer to buy from!

        1. Also on the Island Janine. We had a Grokfeast with my family on a campout- literally roasted steaks over an open fire on a stick! It was SO much fun..the pictures didn’t turn out so great as it was nearly dark. Anyhow, I am trying to find Island sources of meat, beef, pork,lamb and chickens so if you have any time could you let me know your contacts? I would appreciate it!

      2. I don’t know if I posted this in the right spot but I was trying to reply to Suzanne. I am in Snohomish and would love to help with your cow. (sounds weird, huh?) Anyway, I have a friend I see almost weekly that lives in Surrey. Maybe we can make something work out.

  5. Wow… I don’t have many friends that are primal, but maybe this would be a good intro to primal for them! I do have friends that love to eat cow 😉

      1. Hey guys, I’m gonna start a thread in the forum under the Meet and Greet section for NYCers that want to do a picnic 🙂 hope to see you there!

  6. I so want to do this! But I don’t have primal peeps in the area. Would love to work with anyone in CT or the New England area! 🙂

    1. Where in CT? I am in Ridgefield, Fairfield county, by New York border…

        1. Stratford, CT, here. And I’ve got another Primal buddy in Norwalk…

        2. All the CT primals, here is my email address sdsims1972 @ gmail . com Give me a shout and let’s see if we can get something going!

      1. I’m in Norwalk, CT – but am friends with RagingZen, who’s in Stratford. We’ll pretty much travel anywhere semi-close. Let’s make this happen!

        I’ll make primal chilli 🙂

  7. Woot! I’m doing a paleo challenge with the kettlebell girls from my Crossfit gym and I think this would be a fun addition to the challenge!

  8. I’d love to help organize a Grokfeast in Albuquerque/Santa Fe. We can grok with the best of them. Who’s with me?

  9. I’m going to have to find / make some primal-minded friends near Salt Lake City…

    1. My husband and I are in Salt Lake City!!!!!!!!!! 🙂 And we don’t have other Primal friends. And we want to feast!

  10. NYC Groks, ACTIVATE!! let’s knock our skulls together and get this done RIGHT!!!
    -marko in brooklyn (markvsqz @ gmail . com)

  11. I’m in Cleveland, Ohio looking for people to participate. I posted on the nutrition forum under the name “June”. Check it out!

  12. Sure you can’t send a cow to Guatemala? We’re making plans to make this possible…

  13. This is so awesome! One question, can Groklings (kids, babies, toddlers) count as some of the 8 people?

  14. Last years entries looked like so much fun I regretted not doing it myself. This year I am in! My creative juices are starting to flow.

  15. HEY! Wadda ya mean by “even in Milwaukee”?!?! (I just moved to Wisconsin from SoCal so I’m might be feeling a little newbie pride 🙂 )
    So, anybody in southern WI want to get together and win a cow?

    1. Hey Larry!

      Let’s show ’em how it’s done in WI!! I’m in Milwaukee (West Allis in particular). Drop me a note if you want to get something set up. [email protected]

  16. It is my birthday tomorrow and we will be celebrating it Sunday afternoon along with my daughter’s and grandson’s birthdays. Primal birthday party here we come!!

  17. It would be cool to organize a Grokfeast in the Houston area. Any takers?

  18. It’s time like this I regret that most of my social life is online. Can I get bonus points for getting my usual D&D crew outside? XD

  19. This sounds incredibly fun. I’m not sure I could fin 8 friends who wouldn’t think I was a bit crazed making them run around barefoot in the city, but I’ll see what I can rally up!

  20. Anyone in ALABAMA!?! I have one Primal friend…and few others, lol

  21. Where was the Kentucky group from and are they doing it again? I only have one paleo friend! I’m in Lexington.

    1. Just below your comment is another for the Evansville area. Maybe we could pull from both southern/central Indiana and Kentucky to do a picnic in Louisville. I think IU/Wildcat ‘spears’ could be put away for a day of primal picnicing. 🙂

    1. I live in the suburbs just outside of Philly. Most of my friends are not Primal, so I’d be interested in joining up with you for a Philly Grokfeast.

  22. Man, this is awesome. I typically forage in the wild for our meat (venison, Duck and Goose) but would love some grass fed beef.

    Anyone in the Evansville Indiana (Southern IN) interested in a primal picnic?

    1. I’m originally from Henderson, but now live in the Indianapolis area. Perhaps we could pull together enough people to do a picnic in an in-between spot like Terre Haute or Nashville, IN. Any other Hoosiers out there?

  23. Do you live in or near Chicago, IL? The Primal Chicagoans meetup group GROKS my world. If you live near Chicago then you MUST join the meetup group! We will be partaking in this awesome contest and will have an absolute blast no matter what the results are. I am willing to go above and beyond and do something incredibly insane and fun.

    Flash mob at the Green City farmers market? Sure! Lake Michigan plunge? WHY THE HELL NOT?! Large feast with a few dozen people? For sure. Beach volleyball? You bet.

    We are going to plan an entire day of primal fun. It’s going to totally kick ass and grok the world.

    If you live near Chicago and don’t participate then I guarantee you will be disappointed.

    So, let me know if you want to join the party!

    1. so I live out in Wheaton IL (not too far from Chicago) so if no one is doing something in the west suburbs I’m in for Chicago.

    2. i live in Wicker Park, this sounds great. i have a bit of travel this month, but if available would love to make it.

      if you have a date set, let me know and i will see if it fits. great ideas!

  24. I wanna be on this. Any SE / SW Michigan groks who would let me join in?

  25. SE / SW Michigan picnics I could join?
    perenniallyyours is my account name.

  26. Sorry but Evansville is at the opposite end of the state and 6 hours from Chi-Town. Your events sound fantastic and I hope you have a great time.

  27. For those without “Primal” friends/relatives why not host the event anyway and invite them to see what living Primal is all about.

    There are so many delicious dishes that can be made that many people wouldn’t even notice.

    If I am able to get my fours boys and their girlfriends together (2 of them live in different states)before the 3rd, then the Grokfeast is on!

  28. Some bits of the cow are missing. They are a delicacy you can taste here and probably eat there (as sausage).

  29. If anyone in Melbourne is going to hold a grokfeast, please invite me!

      1. Well I’m from Melbourne, but my living in Germany isn’t going to help either of us, sadly 🙁

  30. New to this and not much of an organizer or a cook.

    Hoping there’s other folks in SC that my daughter and I can team up with for this!

    1. Pat,

      I’m out of the area for the duration of the challenge, but sometime later, during the holidays maybe (break from Korg family gatherings), we could have an upstate Grokfeast! My folks live about an hour northwest of Utica, that might be a possibility 🙂

  31. I’m in for an Indianapolis gathering. I’ve got a primal hubby and two little groklings to bring along.

  32. Primal Toad,

    Do you guys welcome Michiana folks? I think it would actually be closer for us to come to Chicago than Indianapolis…

  33. Going camping this weekend and hopefully I can host a grokfeast while out there!!

  34. MISSISSIPPI hERE!!!!!!!!!!! there has to be some grok lovin, fishin, crabbin, boar huntin, deer shootin primals. it is dove season, we can find a boar or ALLIGATOR!!! seriously, goin gator huntin would be a sure fire awesome entry….

    MISSISSIPPI GROKERS, email me if you are interested!!!

  35. I have a get together planned, with some primal and some not guests. Guess I’ll just turn it into a Harvest-Grok fest now 🙂

  36. Anyone from the Bay Area want to participate? I live in Oakland and eat raw steak 🙂

    1. (Oops, I’m new at this commenting businesses so I created a new comment instead of replying. To quote what I said: )

      Hey I’m in Berkeley! I would love to do a picnic! Anyone else in the East Bay want to join us?

      1. I’m South Bay but I’d come up for a picnic, and contribute a dish. *grin*

  37. Hey challengers, are there any Canadians in the crowd? We’re in Vancouver and would really like to host/attend an active Grockfest. The only problem is that we don’t know many people…is there anyone in the area who is interested in participating &/or co-hosting with us?

  38. Wow, I wish I could, but this isn’t really the month for it at all (weddings, bar-mitzvahs, etc…) no free time at all. 🙁

    1. Damn those inconsiderate people… couldn’t they get married or have arranged to be born next month? 😉

  39. A grokfeast sounds fun! Anyone in or around Tacoma, Wa who would want to join us?!? I’ll check out the forum for new buddies too!

  40. I am in Citrus County, Florida! I would love to meetup with some paleo people in my area!! Is anyone here??

    I did good on my first fast–22 hours.

    Able to sprint a bit on my trike(Monday)and had a good day with food and exercise yesterday.

    I pulled out some exercise tapes and got my Wii working again(it was not broken–just me)

    Not enough friends here for a party–maybe next challenge??

  41. @Sky King

    Hey I’m in Berkeley! I would love to do a picnic! 🙂 Anyone else in the East Bay want to join us?

  42. Hey Suzanne. I live in Snohomish and have a friend I see regularly that lives in Surrey. So if you have milk to spare I really would love to get in on it.

  43. Was checking out some the top entries from last year. On one table, I saw a store bought loaf of bread. On another table, I saw corn. Just found that kinda interesting… 😉

  44. Jersey! I’nm so down for getting this organized if anyone in central jersey is in!

  45. Knoxville, TN!!! anyone? Im down here on an internship and would love to do this and meet some primal/paleo peeps while down here!

  46. An idea just popped into this thick noggin of mine, I’m starting a Michigan forum for those who would like to coordinate a Grok Feast!

    Hope that works.

  47. Got a little ahead of myself.

    Meet & Greet Forum

    Michigan Grok Feast 2011

    Thanks if you’d like to coordinate an event.

  48. wish I’d taken a picture of my 10-person dinner party last night w/grass-fed brisket – yummm!

  49. Oh MAN! I am SO getting on this! We have been doing Primal lifestyle for the past year and things are TIGHT so this prize would be WONDERFUL! Brainstorming time…

  50. This is the most horrific contest I’ve ever seen. You should be ashamed of yourselves offering the death of a live being as a prize. May the most disgusting person, with the blackest soul win.

  51. I’ve ordered from US Wellness Meats for over two years. For the past several months, I once received spoiled meat and the second time, in the heat of summer, my meat arrived WARM in the box, without any ice packs. Apparently, they’ve had alot of problems lately. If they raise their meats as clumsily as they package it, then it can’t be very good. And for my troubles — a $10 credit for the first one. And a $25 credit for the second. I lost over $200 with them. Never again. If they had made good on their errors. If only they had enough integrity to stand behind their products. Buyer beware.