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Barbecue festival kicks off FridayTell North Platte what you think
Photo by Frank Graham
Jeff Wiede of North Platte, on the Got Wood barbecue team, prepares the fire for smoking Friday afternoon.
Photo by Frank Graham
Bill Edelman of North Platte, also on the Got Wood team, prepares the bacon that would be wrapped around shrimp for their dish Friday night.

Some say barbecuing is culinary art — one that takes unique skills to seasoning and smoke and, as if by instinct, know when the barbecue is perfectly cooked.

Some of the best barbecuers in the country have gathered in North Platte this weekend to compete for what some call the Nebraska State Barbecue Championship.

The Honky Tonk Barbecue Festival kicked off Friday and hundreds of North Platte residents were expected to flock to the Lincoln County Fairgrounds to sample the fare.

It’s the third annual event, sponsored by KX-104 radio, and features 23 local and national teams. They come from as far away as Wyoming, Iowa, Colorado and Texas.

Of course, there are numerous local teams competing too. In fact, there are 10 teams from North Platte competing for the $1,200 in prize money to be awarded for the best barbecue.

The names of the teams are as flavorful as the meat they cook – Got Wood, Smokin’ Along the Platte, Freddie’s Firebox, Denver Cajun BBQ, Blowin’ Smoke and the Wild Hogs are just a few of the teams competing.

On Friday night, the teams will show off and allow visitors to sample their barbecue. You can find the menus by clicking the Honky Tonk Barbecue ad at the top of this page.

After that, the teams will get down to serious business. They will cook their contest barbecue all night long and will be judged by members of the Kansas City Barbecue Society. The winner will advance to the American Royale National Championship Barbecue contest in Kansas City.

The meat will be judged Saturday morning and the awards will be presented at 2:30 p.m. Saturday.

The Honky Tonk Barbecue Festival recently became a state recognized and sanctioned event and people from all over Lincoln County were expected to visit the cooks and eat barbecue Friday night.

The event will continue Saturday afternoon with the Colgate Country Showdown. Performers from around the region will compete for a chance to advance to the state championship and, ultimately, a $100,000 recording contract in Nashville Tenn.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 5/10/2008
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