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Bonfatto's Barbecue Crew Raising Funds Friday for Boalsburg Cemetery

by on May 16, 2014 11:36 AM

When it comes to smoking cuts of meat, the Bonfatto's barbecue crew doesn't cut corners -- and they certainly don't cut corners when it comes to raising funds to restore the historic Boalsburg Cemetery.

Crews are working to make repairs following recent vandalism at the cemetery, which is the site where locals will partake in the 150th Memorial Day celebration. Vandals knocked over at least 51 headstones sometime overnight May 3. Some of the grave markers date back to the Civil War. A few of them were destroyed beyond repair.

Dave Letterman, owner of Bonfatto's restaurant who lived in Boalsburg for 34 years, felt compelled to hold a barbecue pork and chicken dinner fundraiser at the Boalsburg Fire Company from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday.

"I just felt like I needed to do something because the community has supported our business for 45 years now," Letterman says.

Pulled pork and chicken halves – with sides of coleslaw and baked beans – will be available for $10 with proceeds going toward restoration, which is expected to cost tens of thousands of dollars. Letterman and his crew hope to sell 1,000 meals.

"It's a small amount compared to what's needed, but every bit counts," Letterman says.

They started setting up and smoking the pork late Thursday night in custom-made smokers. The pork needs to smoke for 12 to 14 hours, according to Scott Henninger who designed the smokers.

"A lot of people try to take short cuts, but to do it right, you have to spend the time," Henniger says. "People are missing out if they don't get out here."

Many volunteers are expected help fill orders, including a local youth group, Target employees, two radio stations, firefighters and family and friends. McDonald's will also be offering sweet tea. There will also be live music.

"It's just been a great outpouring of support in the community," Letterman says.

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Photo Gallery - Bonfatto's Boalsburg Cemetery Fundraiser

Jennifer Miller is a reporter for She has worked in journalism since 2005. She's covered news at the local, state and national level with an emphasis on crime and local government.
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