Cookin’ on the Cane BBQ Festival announces winners

By Natalie Covher


Jaycees and the Grand Champion and Reserve Grand Champion Winners

The downtown riverbank was packed with grill masters this weekend for the annual Cookin’ on the Cane BBQ Festival Saturday, June 5 hosted by the Natchitoches Area Jaycees.Even though parts of the festival had to be changed because of the weather forecast it didn’t slow down the cooks.  Teams started arriving Friday evening and began preparing their meats.

“They laughed at me when I called to ask if they were still coming to cook in the rain,” said event coordinator Jason Stelly. “These guys are having a good time and expressing interest in coming back next year.”

The official BBQ competition is governed by the International Barbeque Cookers Association(IBCA) and is a State Championship with points counting towards the Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbeque. A total of 28 teams competed for $5,500 in cash prizes and awards.Each entry was given a number and the judges did not know what BBQ entry belong to what team. The blind taste test for the four different categories(kid’s Q competition, chicken, pork spare ribs and brisket) took over three hours to complete.

“I look forward to this event every year,” said head IBCA Judge Brad Caraway. “I used to cook in it and was even reserve grand champion one year. IBCA is very happy with how things are run at this event. We love it. It’s a great venue in a beautiful city.”

After a lot of tasting the results were in and awards were given to the top 10 in each category as well as overall winners including Grand Champion and Reserve Grand Champion.

Over All Winners:

1st Chris Griffith Grand Champion

2nd Brady BoudinReserve Grand Champion

3rd Chris Sharry

4th Danny Titus

5th Barry Smith

6th Matt Redd

7th Gray Cartwright

8th Rhonda Titus

9th Dennis May

10th Brian Lipps