Jacksonville BBQ Bash sets new records for NBBQA public day

By Kell Phelps
NBN Publisher

The annual public day event that the NBBQA holds each year is always a chance for the public to come and get a taste of what true barbecue is really like. On March 12, 2016, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., a new page was written on how to host a BBQ bash for the public. The format sounds simple, but this only happened because the giants of barbecue showed up and indeed showed out! Ten All-Star barbecue teams all cooked something a little different from the others, trying to get the most tickets to be named the Jax BBQ Bash People’s Choice Champion. These teams were headed up by Mike Mills, Tuffy Stone, Myron Mixon, Chris Lilly, Ray (Dr. BBQ) Lampe, Brad Orrison, and Brooke Orrison, just to name a few. Before the event started, over 350 tickets had been bought in advance, and the line started forming at 10 a.m. for the opening.

This was my 12th year attending and I have never seen a line forming to get in. The event itself was very family-oriented, and there were nothing but smiles as the weather and atmosphere were picture-perfect as seen in these photos. Special thanks to the folks from The Big Green Egg for their sponsorship of the event. I cannot wait to see what will happen next year in Fort Worth, Texas.

Photo Courtesy of Dan Ulledahl
This just about explains what was happening for the entire four hour period known as Jax BBQ Bash. Over 1000 barbecue lovers packed the small street beside the Jacksonville Landing complex for an All-Star barbecue party that cannot be described with words. Special thanks to Dan Ulledahl from BarbequeKansasCity.com for his awesome photos from his drone.

Photo By Kell Phelps
The biggest group featured a huge surprise as Ray Lampe (Dr. BBQ) and the folks from The Big Green Egg hosted a mini EggFest happening. There was no doubt this team also had to win the award for having the most serious cooks, as we saw everything from pizza to seafood being served up from their area. We can’t wait to see what might happen with these guys out in Fort Worth.

Photo by Amy Mills
No NBBQA public day bash would be complete without ribs from the famous 17th Street BBQ gang, with head pitmaster Mike Mills. His ribs have been a super crowd pleaser no matter the weather conditions or location of the country. It might just be illegal to have a BBQ Bash like this without ribs from The Legend!

Photo by Nancy Montgomery
This year’s overall People’s Choice Champion was the team headed up by Chris Lilly. These folks served up some really super steaks that were grilled up to perfection and then finished off in a cast iron skillet. My sample was simply not enough, and I went back again just to see if they could duplicate my first experience. Believe it or not, I think the second sample was better.

Photo By Kell Phelps
The only way to complete a successful BBQ Bash would be with BBQ’s Best Friend Cheerwine. Once the gates opened these ladies were wide open making sure everyone got to experience just how great this soft drink goes with anything that has been smoked on a barbecue pit or fire grilled.

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