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By the late ‘70s to the early ‘80s, Weber was giving around 10,000 live demonstrations a year at stores and shopping centers. After all, the best way to explain the Weber cooking method was to let customers see and taste the food that was prepared on a Weber gas or charcoal kettle.
Stores in shopping centers could take advantage of the open space and put on a Weber Roast-a-Rama show. Two mobile units converted into a stage, and featured a hilarious contest between Sammy Scorch, an ordinary barbecue chef who burned everything on an open grill, and Freddie Flavor, the Weber chef par excellence, who only cooked on a 22” Weber!
Waldo, the animated talking Weber Wonder Dog, provided color commentary on the competition.
It was both entertaining and instructive, and fun for all. Children stayed after the show to talk to Waldo, the talking dog.
At the end of each show, there was a drawing that gave a free Weber kettle to one lucky audience member, to learn the benefits of kettle cooking.
Waldo and the Roast-a-Rama show was so popular, George Stephen had hundreds of stuffed “Waldo” dogs made to give away to the children.
Later, when these shows were no more, George worked at the Arlington Heights Frontier Days, giving the excess “Waldo” dogs as prizes for the carnival games.