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Tri-State BBQ Brawl

Tri-State BBQ Brawl

Kathy Clayton

The Ashland Beacon


A quintessential summer weekend with barbecue, live music, fireworks and more is shaping up in Raceland June 14-15 with the third annual Tri-State BBQ Brawl.

   “We’re doing the barbecue competition a little differently this year,” said Caleb Styes, who along with his father George, organizes the event. “The actual competition will be on Friday, when a panel of judges will taste and compare the entries of ribs and pulled pork. Then on Saturday, it will be, this is who won, let’s celebrate the winner and enjoy the talent and the company.”

   The BBQ Brawl takes place at the Raceland City Park at 711 Chinn Street from 5-10 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. on Saturday. In addition to the barbecue competition, there are activities for children including the grand opening of the city’s splash pad, Peanut the Clown making balloon figures, facepainting and more.

   “We have something for everyone,” Caleb declared. “We have cornhole, craft vendors, and all-day raffles. And the music is one of the main attractions.”

   George Styes encouraged everyone to bring a lawn chair, and there are alos plenty of grassy places to sit to enjoy the music and fireworks on Saturday night.

“The purpose of the Tri-State BBQ Brawl is to promote small businesses and the backroads of small towns,” Caleb explained. “We don’t ask much for people to sign up. We charge the least for competitors and vendors alike. We want to make it affordable and shine a light on these great competitors and talented vendors.” There will also be an alcohol vendor on site.

   “We have seven competitors right now,” said George, “but we are looking for a couple of last-minute competitors, if there is anyone interested. All competitors will be judged in two categories, pulled pork and ribs, all cooked on-site.” He continued, “We do offer small samples that will be voted on by the public to choose the people’s choice award.”

   He noted that it’s not too late for vendors. “Our cut-off date was June 1, for publication and printing reasons. We can still accommodate more vendors, but we can’t guarantee they will make it on the printing advertisements.”

   “We want to emphasize that this event is 100 percent free to the public,” said Caleb. “We want this to be a family event.” He also noted that while parking is limited in the city, “We are doing a shuttle service to and from the high school, also free of charge.”

   Performers on Friday include Griffin Mason, Josh Brown, Brady Ross and Route 23, and the Johnathon Cox Band. Saturday’s music begins at 11 a.m. and the lineup includes Wheelhouse, Casey Hensley, Jayce Turley, and Josh Brown and the Hard Livin’ Legends, as well as some of the acts from Friday.

   “The Tri-State BBQ Brawl is a great way for families to enjoy small town life, with great food, drinks, activities, shopping and music,” said Caleb. “We are looking forward to a great crowd.”

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