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Backyard competition. What do I need?


Meat Mopper
Joined Jul 3, 2007
Myself and a bunch of friends are planning a backyard competition.  I think we will have 5-10 smokers.  We are thinking of doing ribs and tri-tips.  Pretty much anything goes. Judging just best taste. We will have our friends and family will bring sides and just be a party.  Figure have everyone vote for a people choice winner and contestants can not vote for themselves. We are going to setup in my backyard so we have water, elec, shade from the trees and my wife told rent a port-a-potty.  Besides plates, toothpicks, silverware and booze what else will i need for something like this?  obviously i have no experience.  I do have an outside fridge for everyone to use.


Gone but not forgotten. RIP
OTBS Member
Joined Feb 3, 2009
Maybe a better way to judge would be a blind tasting . no one but one person would know whos meat is whos. and that way everyone won't be prejudiced by husbands wives etc.

 Everbody turns in meat in the same type container and a number is put on the contaner

 only the one person knows what number goes w/ which team.
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Smoke Blower
Joined Jun 29, 2010
Have them vote for 1st,2nd and 3rd giving 3 points to first 2 for second and 1 for third. Worked really well for a freindly competion i went to. Dont forget the napkins or wet wipes. Have lots of coolers and ice on hand.


Meat Mopper
Thread starter
Joined Jul 3, 2007
I like the 3,2,1 idea.  it will be more of a party w/ 5-10 of us seriously smoking.  our friends and families know each other enough that we do not have to worry about ballet stuffing and if someone does, oh well.  we can fix it in the 2nd annual event  :-)


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
Joined Sep 25, 2007
I envy you... if it were me and my friends, the judging would be based on whose food did not make you ill.


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Jun 5, 2009
I would suggest tables & chairs? And if you can swing it a couple of awnings/pop up tents might not be a bad idea - they are nice to have for both rain and heat. Since you are going to have food sitting out I suggest some disposable food warmers (check your local resteraunt or party supply store).


Joined May 30, 2011
Because I like to throw largish gatherings - I bought a Nesco some years back for large quality food production since i only have a tiny kitchen and apartment-sized oven - and, lo and behold, it came with the food warmer inserts - and I have been utterly thrilled ever since. I use them constantly - for indoor events as well as outdoor. I'd recommend them any day over the disposable ones - they maintain the heat/moisture level much better with some judicious foil-covering action - and I've had food burned by those sternos before - not good eats.

We bought a pop-up canopy for $35.00 at our local Wal-Mart about 3 years back - another great investment. It has the mosquito netting accessory already built-in, and it makes for much nicer food service because of it. Usually we'll set the food table up in the canopy, have a separate beverage area, and the grill/smoker is off the side of the yard on our concrete driveway (we lay down a layer of opened cardboard boxes to not get grease and such on the concrete - also nicer to walk on than bare 'crete - especially in the hot sun of summertime!)
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