***UPDATE – Due to another contest geared more toward the pros being on the 8th, we are moving the date back to the 15th. Here is the updated flyer ***
Last year we had such a good time that we couldn’t help ourselves throwing a second one. And for this one we plan on cranking up the heat on the event. We’ll have more to do, more trophies, more swag for the winners, and more raffle prizes for everyone, and most of all, more money for charity. We also plan on having more teams, but the same basic premise — Only backyard grills. No custom rigs. Just backyard guys competing with backyard guys. If the pros want to show, they have to use the grills of us Joes.
Two other things are going up though. We will increase the amount people can spend on the grills used in the contest to include the Big Green Egg. It’s not about a couple hundred here or there, it’s about keeping the professionals and their big rigs out. If they want to compete they have to use the same grills the rest of us use. As long as the grill was under around $1,000, we’ll let you compete.
The other thing that is going up this year is the entry fee. Last year we charged $50 and after expenses we didn’t have much for charity. We had planned on giving half of what we brought in after expenses to charity and keep the other half to improve the event for this year, but we wound up giving it all after expenses and even more out of our own pockets because we didn’t feel we were giving enough.
***Update – The sponsors, Hot Shots and Big St. Charles Motor Sports want to make sure everyone who wants to compete can compete and they don’t want money to stand in the way. They have offered to pick up half the entry fee so teams will only have to pay what they paid last year and they will pick up the other $50. If you have already paid the $100, we will refund the other half on the day of the event.***
This year we will be benefiting Wounded Warrior Project, like we did last year, but will also support Wonderland Camp which provides a fun, educational camp experience at the Lake of the Ozarks for physically and mentally challenged individuals.
Also, the location has changed. Sylvan Springs Park was great last year, but we couldn’t have more than a handful more teams there. As you can tell by the logo at the top of this post, this year the folks at Big St. Charles Motor Sports are going to sponsor the event:
I want to party with that guy!?
These guys know how to throw an event and we figure that our audiences overlap quite a bit:
Also sponsoring the event is Hot Shots Bar and Grill. That’s right. You remember these lovelies that handed out the trophies last year, right?
The world famous Hot Shots girls will be there all day serving ice cold adult beverages. Is there anything better than BBQ, beer and ______ (this is a family friendly site, so let your imagination finish that sentence).
Couple little things will change this year in terms of the categories and scoring. First, I promise not to hose up the scoring like I did last year. Second, we’re dropping the pork steak competition. There wasn’t enough variation amongst the pork steaks to justify it. This year we will be doing a chicken category along with the hold overs from last year: ribs and appetizer.
Did I mention $500 for Best In Smoke and $50 for first place in the three categories?
So how can you enter? You can mail a check with your email address, team name and a phone number to:
Grillin Fools Inc
P.O. Box 1648
Cahokia, Il 62206
And we have more things to do than just watch people grill, smell the smoke and sample their wares. There will be a petting zoo for the kids as well as a guy making balloon animals for the kids.
Here are some pics of what that looked like in the past:
Click below for the rules – Forgive the bad formatting:
Rules for the Second Annual Grillin Fools Backyard BBQ Bash
- All cooking must be done on mass market grills under $700.
- No large custom rigs
- We will permit Big Green Eggs
- We will allow UDS’s or Ugly Drum Smokers despite them being custom
- Gas grills are allowed as long as they are under $1,000 or so
- i. The main thing here is no gigantic, over the top rigs.
- i. This is your chance to get creative. There is no limitation as to what you use as ingredients as long as the cooking satisfies rule 1.
- We would like a brief description of what your appetizer is at least 48 hours before the event. This will be read to the judges before they sample so please leave anything referring to your team name out.
- i. You can do legs, thighs or wings. If you’re bold you could go with the unforgiving breast. Choose which is best for you.
- i. We are referring to pork ribs here but not limiting it to spares or baby backs. You can use either.
- i. Teams may check in later than 7:00 if they don’t fell they need the full time to prepare their product
- i. All meat/ingredients must be inspected upon check in to ensure freshness for the safety of the judges.
- ii. The meat may be marinated, injected, rubbed, or a combination of all, prior to check in, but it must be inspected for sanitary reasons
- iii. No precooking/parboiling is allowed
- iv. No food is allowed to go onto a grill until it is first checked by one of the event staff and is approved.
- Upon check in and set up, someone will be around to check to make sure the food is sanitary
- Failure to comply with this rule will result in disqualification
- i. We very much encourage the giving away of samples so that the judges aren’t the only ones who get to taste what the competitors have to offer.
- i. Bottled water and crackers to clear the palette will be provided for the judges
- i. Entry is submitted after the official turn in time for that category
- ii. The individual servings are not completely separated
- Make sure that each portion is cut cleanly from any other portion. If 6 ribs are submitted and two are stuck together by some meat then the box will be disqualified.
- iii. Less than 6 servings are turned in per box
- iv. Sauce has “pooled” in the bottom of the turn in box
- This rule will be waved for the appetizer category as some teams have expressed interest in using a finishing sauce
- v. Turn in box is marked in some way to identify it and circumvent the double blind system.
- If you get something on your box, track down the contest organizers for a replacement.
- i. The scores will be compared (counting all five judges) for the highest cumulative scores in taste, then tenderness, then appearance.
- ii. If still tied, then the low score, which was thrown out, will be compared and the higher of the low scores will break the tie.
- iii. If still tied, then coin toss will be used.
- i. 3:15 for Appetizers
- ii. 4:00 for Chicken
- iii. 4:45 for Ribs
- i. A small metal shovel is a good idea to bring along to dump charcoal after the event ends.
- Metal trashcans will be provided for charcoal disposal.
- i. Please bring a roll of duct tape as we will need to tape down the entire length of the extension chord to ensure no one trips over it.
- Best combined score will be named Best in Smoke
- Check in
- Check in starts at 7:00.
- Proper refrigeration is very important.
- At check in, each team will be assigned an approximate 18’X18’ plot where all their cooking will be performed.
- Selling Food
- Selling of food is not allowed. Giving away free samples is up to the grilling teams and samplers discretion, but for tax purposes and health department rules, the sale of food is not permitted.
- Each team will turn in at least 6 samples of each category to be judged in the Styrofoam boxes provided by the event sponsors
- Judges are not allowed to consume alcohol while judging
- If we have any husband and wife/boyfriend and girlfriend judges then they are not allowed to be at the same judging table
- All samples to go to the judges have to be submitted in numbered Styrofoam boxes (provided by contest organizers) with 6 samples in each.
- The boxes will be turned in to contest organizers and renumbered for a double blind system to ensure that the scores are based on the food and not the team that prepared it.
- Entries can be disqualified for:
- Entries will be judged on Appearance, Tenderness/Texture and most importantly Taste in a weighted scoring system with Appearance accounting for 0.5714 of the overall score, Tenderness/Texture 1.1428 and Taste 2.2858.
- Once a sample box has been presented, the judges will not be able to talk to each other until all scores are marked down for all the samples in front of them.
- Scoring will be done on a scale of 2-9.
- All scoring starts at 6 which is average and goes up and down from there as the judge sees fit.
- Disqualified entries receive a 1.
- The low score of the six scores will be thrown out.
- In case of a tie:
- Turn in times
- First round of judging
- Awards will be presented soon after the final scores are tabulated
- This is a rain or shine event so some sort of awning or canopy is recommended just in case of inclement weather and to shade from the sun.
- Appearance is not just for the food itself, but how it is presented, so think about how each box looks before it is turned in. Some greenery as a nest for your submissions can go a long way for the appearance score.
- While you cannot sell food in any way shape or form it can be given away. Packing some toothpicks and a serving tray might be a good way to give samples to people in attendance and each other to get a feel for what you are up against.
- It will require multiple grills to compete in all categories, plan accordingly
- Charcoal disposal at the end of the event needs to be done carefully
- If you need electricity, let us know so we can place you near a jack.
- Rule Changes
- These rules are ever evolving. We will send out amendments as quickly as possible to all entrants as necessary.
The event will be held at Big St. Charles Motor Sport.
- Take Highway 70 into St. Charles, take exit 225 (Truman Blvd) and go north
- Take the very first right on West Clay and follow the signs.
- Big St. Charles is on the left.