Bands & BBQ at the Point
Madison, Ind., cooking team readies
for third outing at Carrollton event
The event features pro, amateur contests
and live music
Bands & BBQ at the Point
• Sept. 14-15 at Carrollton, Ky.’s Point Park on the Ohio River
• Information: (502) 732-7036 or visit www.Carrolltontourism.com
CARROLLTON, Ky. (September 2018) – The Butts-N-Racks BBQ team was really “on fire” at the 2018 Madison Ribberfest, winning a perfect score of 180 for first place in the “anything butt” category and fourth place in ribs.
Carrollton, Ky., is the next stop for brothers Gene and Brent Copeland, who are now looking forward to their third year at the Bands and BBQ at the Point festival for the Kansas City Barbeque Society-sanctioned competition. Their previous best finish was fourth overall, so the Ribberfest awards fuel the excitement of continuing to compete in KCBS cook-offs.
Admission is free, Bands and BBQ at the Point, is planned for Sept 14-15 at Point Park along the Ohio River with vendors, competitors, entertainment and bands packing every minute of the weekend with family friendly options. Misty Wheeler, director of Carrollton-Carroll County Tourism, said the goal is to add something new every year. Last year, the amateur “Backyard BBQ” was added.
“This year will include a magician, face painting and inflatables.” The event originated as “Blues to the Point” and then in 2011 became Bands and BBQ at the Point. Wheeler radiates enthusiasm in her role as tourism director in her hometown since 2013.
Photo by Sharyn Whitman
Butts-N-Racks barbecue cooking team consists of brothers (from left) Gene and Brent Copeland of Madison, Ind.
The Copeland brothers first competed at the Madison Ribberfest in 2009, trying just one competition. Then they competed in North Vernon, building their confidence and expertise.
The robust band schedule includes Jordan Wilson Coalition, a hometown band playing blues, classic rock and roll; and Kirby’s Dreamland from Louisville, both on Friday night. Saturday features Lexington’s Avery Glenn Crabtree with modern and traditional country, blues, bluegrass, rock and roll and more; Jericho Woods country music (Best in Kentucky Award last year); Young Country, a local favorite from Trimble County; and SecondHand Crush from 10 p.m. to midnight after the fireworks with rock, classic ’80s mix and a variety of genres.
Last year, they entered seven events and this year plan to do 12 events. They have found there are many top teams with good cooks. The meat is inspected at the start of the competition with no advance preparation permitted.
The Copelands mix some of their own sauces plus commercial sauces. In this Indiana-Kentucky area, sauces are generally sweeter and ketchup based. Important criteria include the consistency of the meat, the tenderness of the meat and the flavors of the rubs and sauces.
Gene Copeland works in animal control for the city of Madison. Brent works as a mechanic in the Madison Parks Department. However, their weekend barbecue hobby has now turned into a food truck business, doing a few shows like the car show and catering. The Butts-N-Racks team has served pulled pork and sides at factories and local weddings.
“We stay busy,” Gene said. “The best part is having fun as a family, cooking and getting to see all the people.”
Highlighting the event, Wheeler listed some of the activities for the festival. The West Sixth Distillery will set up Friday, (they are sponsoring a parallel Saturday event, “Bike the Bluegrass” fundraiser for the American Lung Association at Gen. Butler State Resort Park).
The Neeley Family Distillery from Sparta, Ky., will set up on Saturday. Vendors will be grilling and selling meats and snacks, while the live bands provide an upbeat vibe from 6-11 p.m. Friday and from noon to midnight Saturday.
Cliff Robinson of Madison, Ind., and the Rolling Thunder Air Shows will provide entertainment at 1:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, featuring two different airplanes.
“Bring lawn chairs and blankets,” Wheeler advised, adding, “personal coolers are also allowed.” Then settle in for the late night fireworks and more music.
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