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New entertainment, famous chefs highlight LP I Love BBQ Fest

July 2, 2011
MARGARET MORAN, News Staff Writer
LAKE PLACID — Now in its sixth year the I Love Barbecue Festival (ILBBQF) has some new elements — in both food and entertainment.

The event, like always, will take place July 2- July 4 in the Olympic Skating Oval and raise money for the Thomas Shipman Youth Center, but this year some new famous culinary faces will be making an appearance.

Three-time world champion barbecue pit master and reality TV personality Myron Mixon will do a cooking demo at 2 p.m. on Saturday, July 2 at the festival and will do a meet-and-greet afterward, and he will also compete in the Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned competition on Monday, July 4 as the chief cook of Jack’s Old South BBQ Team.

Mixon is one of the most decorated barbecue competitors in the world. He has won more than 180 grand championships, 11 national championships and more than 30 state champion titles.

Dmitry Feld, general manager of the event, is thrilled to have Mixon at the event.

“That’s a huge thing for us,” he said. “It’s unbelievable because Myron Mixon doesn’t come to many events. He chose the Lake Placid barbecue festival, so it shows me that it has earned its right spot in the world of competitive American barbecue.”

While in Lake Placid, Mixon will also be signing his new cookbook “Smokin’ with Myron Mixon” and doing a meet-and-greet from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Courtyard Marriott.

British chef Peter Sidwell will also be making an appearance at the festival.

According to Sidwell’s website, he has been a chef for 17 years, and in that time, he has cooked his way through Europe, wrote two books “Simply Good Taste” and “Simply Good Bread,” and stars in the TV show “The Lakes on a Plate” that airs on Channel 4 in England.

He will be a celebrity judge for the I Love BBQ Junior World Championships on Sunday, July 3.


Also new this year will be the Krusher BMX Stunt Team, which are12 stunt professionals who will perform bike and in-line skating exhibitions.

They will entertain fest-goers at 2 p.m., 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Sunday, July 3 with their daredevils moves of tail whips, bar spins and back flips.

“They are undeniably a form of expression; expression of life and freedom, a determination to overcome fear and to do what appears to be impossible,” according to the BMX Stunt website.

“It’s going to be unbelievable,” Feld said. “People who like sports with a little edge, adrenaline, speed, will definitely enjoy it.”

There will also be musical performances throughout the three-day event. Twenty musical acts ranging from local to nationally renowned will perform at the event. (See page 6)

“It’s going to be a lot of fun because we have such a diverse lineup [this year],” said Gordy Sheer, director of entertainment for the event. “We’ve got country, blues, reggae, jam bands, singer/songwriters, bluegrass and rock ‘n’ roll.”

Sheer said this year’s lineup is good.

The headline musical performance is Buckwheat Zydeco, a two-time Grammy Award-winning musical group that’s headed by Stanley “Buckwheat” Dural, Jr. Buckwheat is known for his Louisiana zydeco music, a mix of Creole, jazz and blues music. He has collaborated with well-known musicians like Eric Clapton and U2. The band is scheduled to perform at the festival at 5 p.m. on Monday, July 4.


Proceeds from the festival will go to the Thomas Shipman Youth Center, a nonprofit organization where Feld is the president of the board.

“Our goal is to raise money for the Shipman Youth Center,” Feld said. “We try to raise as much money as possible.”

In the past five years the festival has raised nearly $90,000 for the center. In its best year it raised $21,000, according to Feld.

“I’m hoping to break that record,” he said.

This event is the center’s largest annual fundraiser, and its proceeds go to fund “a safe place for kids to hang out,” Feld said.

Since it opened in 1999, it has served between 3,000 to 4,000 children from all areas ranging in age from 10 to 18, according to Feld.

Some of the children who use the center will volunteer at the festival, Feld said.

For adults daily admission is $6, and for children under 10, daily admission is free. The festival will be open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, July 2-3, and 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, July 4.

The food

The first food event to kick of this year’s festival is new. It is the Pulled Pork and Chicken Wing Tasting. The event will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 2. The food will be prepared by some of the barbecue teams competing in the festival, but not all, according to Feld.

“Not every team will do this because some of them want to concentrate on competition [later on in the festival],” Feld said.

For $3 fest-goers, will be able to taste 2 ounces of pulled pork and 3 chicken wings prepared by teams. The public will then be able to vote for which team’s food they liked the best.

Later on Saturday, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., teams will battle it out in the High Peaks Ford Midnight Grilling Bash. As of Monday, 15 teams have signed up for this event, according to Feld. The teams will compete in four categories: New York strip steak, chicken, fatty, a type of sausage, and pizza. The team that gets awarded the most overall points from judges will win the contest.

On Sunday, July 3 starting at noon junior teams, whose members range from 16 to 21 years old, will compete in the I Love Barbecue Junior World Championships. Cooking will be done in four categories: chicken, ribs, steak and dessert, and the teams must include side dishes that consist of a starch and vegetable.

These teams won’t only be vying for medals, but also for scholarships to Paul Smith’s College. Members of the first place team will each get a $10,000 scholarship to be used over four years. Members of the second place team will each be awarded $6,000. And members of the third place team will each get $4,000.

Youth division teams, whose members range from 12 to 15, will compete on Sunday after the junior division for a youth barbecue title. According to Feld, the youth teams will not have to make side dishes and will only compete in three of the food categories.

On Sunday from 1 to 3 p.m. the Best Ribs in the East, formerly known as Buck-A-Rib, will occur. According to Feld, it is the most popular festival event.

“Last year, sold within two hours over 5,000 ribs,” Feld said.

The public can purchase two ribs for $3 from the teams. According to Feld, as of Monday, 14 teams have signed up to compete in this event. The winning team will be chosen by the public.

The Top Chef competition will also take place on Sunday. The event will go on all day, according to Feld. He said, as of Monday, six chefs have signed up to compete for the title of Top Chef. The public will be allowed to try the food the chefs whip up.

On Monday, July 4, the Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned event will occur.

“It’s why they all come here,” Feld said.

Teams will compete in four categories: chicken, ribs, pulled pork and beef brisket. There will be category winners and an overall winner for this event, according to Feld. The overall winner will not only win a cash prize, but also be invited to the American Royal Invitational BBQ Championship in Kansas City and be placed in a drawing for the Jack Daniels World Championship in Lynchburg, Tenn.


There are specific guidelines for judging the food of the Kansas City Barbecue competition, according to Lennart Folin, judging coordinator of the festival.

One thing the judges will be looking at is the appearance of the food.

There shouldn’t be “pooling of sauce,” Folin said. There also shouldn’t be any garnish mistakes.

The food shouldn’t be overcooked or undercooked, according to Folin.

“You don’t want it mushy,” he said.

Judges will also be keeping track to see if food is turned in within the allotted time.

Another thing judges will be checking for is “of course taste,” Folin said.

To make sure the judges’ taste buds remain uncompromised during judging they are only allowed to drink water and eat plain crackers, according to Folin.

Judges are also not allowed to lick their fingers — they have to clean them off using a plain paper towel — and they can’t make facial expressions indicating what they think of the food, he said.

“All the judges are volunteers,” Folin said.

Margaret Moran can be

contacted at (518) 523-4401 or

Article Photos

Photo provided
Two-time Grammy Award-winning artist Buckwheat Zydeco will perform at 5 p.m. on Monday, July 4 at the BBQ Fest.

Fact Box

Cost and times
For adults daily admission is $6, and for children under 10, daily admission is free. The festival will be open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, July 2-3, and 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, July 4.
For more information about the ILBBQF, visit



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