The 2013 Truman Heritage Festival Barbecue Championship
April 21, 2013
When I lived out of state, people who knew I was from the Kansas City area would ask my opinion of the local barbecue restaurants. I was evidently considered an expert on barbecue simply by growing up here in the KC area. Believe it or not, one can find good barbecue in places like Half Moon Bay, California, and Pocatello, Idaho.
Here in KC however, we are spoiled by having some of the greatest barbecue in the country. There might be one or two good barbecue joints in some cities, but in KC there are literally dozens of great barbecue restaurants. We love barbecue here so much that we started the Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS), the world’s largest organization of barbecue and grilling enthusiasts.
One of the ways KCBS promotes barbecue as America’s cuisine is through KCBS-sanctioned barbecue competitions. The 2013 Truman Heritage Festival Barbecue Championship, sponsored by the City of Grandview and Mid-Continent Public Library (May 3-4), is one such event. Over 30 barbecue teams will compete to produce the best barbecued chicken, pork ribs, pork shoulder/butt, and beef brisket for their share of $4750 in prize money. The dishes will be judged on taste, tenderness, and appearance and given the near fanatical love of barbecue here in the KC area; the bar will be pretty high!
The barbecue teams aren’t the only people who will benefit from the competition. Your taste buds can benefit by buying and eating the teams’ barbecue, and in the process, help support Mid-Continent Public Library’s Summer Reading Program. While the barbecue is the high point of the Truman Heritage Festival for me, the Festival (May 2-4) has a lot more to offer: a parade, a carnival, food and craft vendors, Civil War enactors and living history at the Depot Museum, a car show, live entertainment, BBQ Championship, and live music concerts. Check the 2013 Truman Heritage Festival web site for schedules and information.