These local ‘celebrities’ are cooking up ribs for the 2023 Labadie Rib Fest competition

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These local ‘celebrities’ are cooking up ribs for the 2023 Labadie Rib Fest competition

BAY CITY, MI — Jay Samborn hopes some “celebrity” participation here adds some meat to the bones of a cookoff competition planned for this weekend’s Labadie Rib Fest.

The four-day, barbecue-glazed festival will include the Celebrity Rib Cookoff from noon to 1 p.m. Friday, July 28, at Veterans Memorial Park.

The competition will feature 16 media members and radio personalities from the region along with 10 barbecue restaurants assisting them in cooking up ribs for judges.

The winning team will receive a trophy.

Related: Your guide to Bay City’s smoky, savory 2023 Labadie Rib Fest

Samborn, the festival’s organizer, said he anticipated the contest would heighten interest in the festival. That, in turn, would increase proceeds collected at the festival, and in turn, raise additional funding for charities.

Each of the restaurants in the competition planned to donate a portion of those proceeds to designated nonprofits, Samborn said.

“It was successful last year,” he said of the Celebrity Rib Cookoff contest. “We’re looking for it to do even better this year.”

The following list includes the “celebrity” teams and the barbecue restaurants assisting their respective efforts:

  • Stan Parman, of WILZ-FM; After Hours BBQ, of Orville, Ohio
  • “Jodi K,” of WCEN-FM; Blazin’ Bronco BBQ, of Port St. Lucie, Florida
  • Johnny Burke, of WRSR-FM, and Sheryl Coonan, of WJRT-TV; Cowboys Barbeque & Rib Co., of Weatherford, Texas
  • “Matt and Adam,” of WKQZ-FM, and Bob Martin, of Review Magazine; Fat Matt’s BBQ, of Munger
  • Art Lewis, of WSGW-FM, and Kathy Roberts, of Route Bay City; Johnson’s BBQ, of Chesapeake, Virginia
  • “Big Tone,” of WTLZ-FM, and “Mack,” of WGER-FM; Off The Bone BBQ, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio
  • Seth Justice, of WKCQ-FM; Outlaws Revolution BBQ, of Erie, Pennsylvania
  • Caitlyn French, of The Bay City Times/MLive, and Rachel Geddes, of WHNN-FM; Smokin’ Bob-B-Que, of Gladwin
  • “Breck,” of WIOG-FM; Swine BBQ, of Medina, Ohio
  • Jason Shaw, of WMJO-FM; That Guys BBQ, of Bay City

The Labadie Rib Fest kicked off Thursday, July 27, and continues through Sunday, July 30. Along with the Friday contest, the festival will feature music, shopping, entertainment, pig races and plenty of edible ribs.

Rib Fest launched in 2022 as a reincarnation of the beloved Labadie Pig Gig, which ran from 1992 to 2012 and was a popular summertime staple in Bay City.

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