Amateur BBQ competition heats up Rapid City

Pulled pork, chicken, sausage links, ribs and of course the sauce all come to mind when someone mentions the word barbecue.  But who say’s you have to wait until July 4th, to have a good barbecue?  Certainly not one group of amateur cooks who say they like to grill anytime.

The Back Yard Amateur Barbeque Cooking Contest at Rapid City’s Central States Fairgrounds is giving people like Mike Esselboren experience.

“We’re trying to cook, this is our first attempt to barbecue. I’m cooking a brisket,” said Esselboren.

And so is second timer Phyliss Van Pelt who is adding a little spice to the mix. ” Barbecue is kind of a man’s world but a lady has stepped in,” said Van Pelt.

Nine other cooks have stepped in to show off their pulled pork, brisket, baby back ribs, short ribs and pork butt. The judges will send the first place winner home $175.00 richer. While the money will be a sweet reward the contestants say other factors fuel their passion for grilling.

 “Not doing it for the money at all. Just for the experience, for the fun to be out here on a nice weekend,” Esselboren said.

 “I don’t care if I win or not it’s just being around everybody and visiting with everyone and finding out their techniques,” said Van Pelt.

“It’s a food of love thing; good times, good buddies, that’s all it’s about,” said amateur cook Justin Rhodes.   

Not to mention grilling is a good way to fill an appetite.


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