Smell (and taste) the BBQ this Saturday in Charles City!

News Release

CHARLES CITY – The wonderful aroma of barbeque in the smoker will waft through the air along the riverfront in Charles City on Saturday, June 16, with the return of the Charles City BBQ Challenge.

Amateur and professional smoking teams alike will be competing for cash prizes and bragging rights in this annual taste tussle which will be judged by certified Kansas City BBQ Society rules as well as the public with a People’s Choice Award. Participating BBQ teams will assemble Saturday morning in the parking lot behind City Hall and adjacent to Hot Shots at 700 Riverside Dr., and smoke St. Louis-style ribs all day prior to the judging at 4 p.m. The public is welcome to come check out the different smoking teams and style throughout the day, then starting at 4:30 p.m. ticket holders will be able to sample the goods for themselves.

A limited number of VIP Tickets are on sale for $30 each, which will get you one rib from each of the Challenge participants … enough for two people, or one really big BBQ fan! Charles City Area Chamber of Commerce members will receive a discount price of $25 per ticket. VIP Ticket holders will also have the opportunity to vote for the People’s Choice Winner, as well as get first dibs on going through the sampling line.

Then at 5:15 p.m., Ala Carte Ticket holders will be able to start going around and selecting a total of three ribs of their choice to try for $5. Multiple Ala Carte Tickets may be purchased if you would like to try more than three ribs. The number of Ala Carte Tickets available will depend on the participants’ ability to smoke extra ribs on Saturday. If you don’t want to miss out on the ribs, though, don’t wait until the last second to get your tickets or they may be gone.

Food, treats and beverages will be available for purchase throughout the day, with an ice cream truck, beer garden and non-alcoholic beverages available on site. Hot Shots Billiards will also be open and serving food inside all day.

The winners of the BBQ Challenge will be announced around 7 p.m., with a total of $1,200 in prize money to be awarded.

This event is being brought to you by the Charles City Area Chamber of Commerce. BBQ Challenge sponsors include Fareway, CUSB Bank, Daniel’s Auto Collision, The Rustic Corner, Sisson & Associates, Snap On Tools, Tom Rouse State Farm Insurance, Dugan’s Restaurant and Lounge, Mick Gage Plumbing & Heating, Nelson Tire & Auto Inc., Swartzrock Implement Co., Zoetis, the Charles City Press, Dight Trucking, Cedar River Software & Security LLC, and L & J Industries.

For tickets or more information, contact the Chamber at (641) 228-4234, email or visit the website at