Back for its third straight year, dozens of barbecue chefs are ready to challenge your taste buds, and each other, this Saturday at the Colonial Mall (400 Central Ave. NE) in St. Michael for the Third Annual Smoke N’ Wright Barbecue Contest.
Entrants are competing in categories that include pork, chicken, Tri Tip and Spam. Yes, THAT Spam. Food will be prepared throughout the day in front of Sadie’s Coffee House and Midwest Rubs as Kimberly Walden and her partner, Brownie, welcome participants from around the North Wright County area.
“We’ve had a lot of fun the last couple of years, and things continue to grow, which means we get to help more people,” Brownie, who operates the Midwest Rubs side of the business, said. “Great food, great music and some really good people. Hopefully, this year, we get the good weather, too.”
Food will be ready to roll around 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 19. The event runs through about 3 p.m. in the afternoon.
Part of the weekend now includes a Smoke N Wright 5K Fun Run. This chip-timed event will open with registration at 7:30 a.m. (or, you can register online right now) and the race at 9 a.m. All proceeds from the 5K will benefit the St. Michael-Albertville Stallions Special Olympics.
The event has raised nearly $5,000 for the St. Michael Fire Department over the last two years. Fire Department staff received new equipment purchased with the funds raised via Smokin’ Wright last year, including turnout gear.
A bean bag competition featuring “civil servants” will also be a part of this year’s event, and held on the barbecue grounds.
IF YOU GO
What: The Third Annual Smoke N’ Wright BBQ Contest and 5K Fun Run
Where: Colonial Mall Parking Lot, St. Michael
When: Food starts at 11 a.m., though there will be cooking and smoking action all day. The 5K run, new this year, starts with registration at 7:30 a.m. and the run at 9 a.m.
Why: To raise money for the local fire departments and STMA Special Olympics.