It is that time of year again! Bar B Q time at The Hearth & Grill Shop. Join us for our 9th Annual Backyard Challenge amateur BBQ Cook-Off! Hopefully, this letter will look very familiar to you, if it does not, then we invite you to join in on the fun. We invite you to bring your grills, your smokers, your tents, your banners, your lawn chairs, your techniques, your innovative ideas, and most importantly your passion for competition, BBQ, and smoking.
This year’s competition will be held on Saturday, June 1st at The Hearth & Grill Shop. Another record number of 32 teams participated in last year’s event and the number of teams competing has grown larger each year, so booth space will be at a premium. Competition space will be first come – first serve, so enter as soon as possible, to guarantee your spot for this years Challenge.
This year’s entry fee is a flat rate of $75.00, which covers both the Gas and Charcoal Divisions. The entire entry fee goes directly to the Cash Prizes. Once again, the format will consist of Gas and Charcoal Divisions. Each Division has a Chicken and Rib Category. Cash and prizes will be awarded to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers in each of the four Categories. The Grand Prize, a Large Big Green Egg, goes to the team that shows the best overall score in the Chicken and Rib Categories in BOTH the Gas and Charcoal Divisions. The Dessert category will not affect the Grand Prize standings, however, there will be a cash prize and bragging rights for the winner of the Dessert category.
There are a few changes to aid in the exit strategy from the competition area to get your team out as quick as possible. First, breakdown your area before you are instructed to move your team vehicle in for loading. Second, please do no block the lane while loading. Third, we ask that you do not bring a BBQ Rig or Trailer over 10’ long. If you receive permission to do so, be prepared to be one of the last participants to leave the competition area.
The changes that we implemented for parking last year greatly helped, so keep in mind the following parking changes that we will continue this year. First, NO parking will be allowed in the Competition Cooking Area at any time, Unload and Load Only. Second, parking is at an extreme premium. Each team will be allowed ONE (1) Team vehicle and ONE (1) Team parking space near the Competition Cooking Area. All other teammates, family and friends are to park as advised by the competition staff. Lastly, RV parking and electricity for RV parking is limited. Once again, First come – First served.
The most important rule for the day will be HAVE FUN! We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your continued participation in this event. Enter now and get your team together for the 9th Annual Backyard Challenge BBQ Cook-Off. We look forward to seeing you at set up on Friday, May 31st.
Thank you for your participation in advance. For questions or concerns please contact me.
Jeff M. Lunsford
The Hearth & Grill Shop
(615) 244-6947 fax
See below for official rules or click to download the 9th Annual Backyard Challenge Rules and Entry Form (PDF).
Backyard Challenge Official Rules
1) Entry fee will be $75.00 to enter in either or both divisions: Charcoal or Gas
2) Chicken and Pork Ribs (no country ribs). You must enter both the Gas and Charcoal divisions and have entries in both the Chicken and Rib categories to be eligible for Grand Championship.
3) All meat must be inspected, in original store package and in a cooler with ice, and must be held at or below 40 degrees.
4) After meat is inspected, you may begin to marinate products. Meat inspection will start at 6:00pm Friday though 8:00am Saturday.
5) No food products are to be sold or given to public from cook sites.
6) A 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner will be awarded in both Divisions and in each category.
7) Turn in times: 11:30 am Chicken; 1:00 pm – Ribs; 2 pm – Dessert. 2:30 –3:00 pm Awards.
8) You will have five (5) minutes before and five (5) minutes after the hour to turn in your entries to judges.
9) Containers for judging turn-in will be provided. You must turn in at least 6 samples. Example: 6 ribs; 6 chicken thighs, etc.
10) Entries will be judged on appearance, tenderness/ texture and taste in accordance with Kansas City BBQ Society rules.
11) When you finish cooking, a container will be provided for your hot ashes, excess grease etc. please use this container to avoid fires and help keep your area clean.
12) Your cooking area must be as clean as you found it. Garbage containers will be provided. Must have a gray water (SANITIZING SOLUTION) container and cleaning containers with a solution of water and bleach.
13) Do not have any open fires on the ground. Use a charcoal starter (chimney or start the fire in your cooker). All grill fires must be contained.
14) You will have a 10 x 10 cook site area designated for you. Those needing more space need to notify the Backyard Challenge Coordinator for possible consideration as available.
15) NO Trailers over 10’ will be permitted. No Exceptions – No Discussion.
16) PARKING – Each team will be allowed ONE (1) Team vehicle and ONE (1) Team parking space near the Competition Cooking Area. All others associated with the team are to park as advised by the competition staff.
17)There is no parking allowed in the Competition Cooking Area, only unload and load.
18) There will be an exit strategy and participants will be instructed on how to exit the Competition area. At the conclusion of the event, please begin to break down your area and you will be instructed on when to bring your team vehicle to the competition area. When loading – do not block the exit out of the competition area.
19) RV and overnight parking is limited. First come, First serve. Electricity is limited to the RV parking area.
20) Access to electricity and electric extension cords will be available on a limited basis and may not be available to all areas of the competition. Those requiring an electric outlet need to notify the Backyard Challenge coordinator prior to the event for possible consideration, as available.
21) You may cook with gas, wood, or charcoal.
22) Water and ice will not be provided.
23) A MANDATORY cooks meeting will be held Saturday, June 1st at 8:00am to go over rules and questions.
24) No pets, fireworks, or firearms are allowed on grounds.
25) Failure to follow the above rules may cause your entry to be disqualified.
26) Value of Awards will be in excess of $7,000 in cash, prizes, and products.
27) Set up times will be Friday, May 31st, 6-10pm & Saturday, June 1st, 6-8am. NO exceptions. Overnight security will be provided for the event and access to restrooms will be available.
28) You must be 18 years of age to compete. 18 or younger, a parent or guardian must be present at all times.
29) Hearth and Grill Shop, vendors, sponsors and any other participating entities shall not be held liable for any injury or loss.
30) The decisions by the judges will be final.
31) Be Competitive, Help your Neighbors & Have Fun!
Fun from 2012
See more results from last year’s cook-off.