Restaurant News

BBQ Overload: Is the Valley Big Enough For Two Barbecue Events in One Day?

Two barbecue festivals. One Saturday. WTF?!

We completely understand that there are very few weather-appropriate weekends for festivals in the Valley, hence the abundance in March and April, but seriously, guys, you couldn't maybe space it out by a week?

To the uninformed, this definitely looks like a case of poor planning and/or mis-communication among promoters. Such is not the case. 

Landon Evans, promoter for the Chandler event, The Great American Barbecue & Beer Festival, and David Tyda, promoter for Scottsdale's Arizona Barbecue Festival, are good friends, according to Evans, and have worked together from the start of Evans' endeavor to bring the Valley a second barbecue event.  

The problem reportedly rests with a completely outside party --- the Kansas City Barbecue Society.

The whole thing, boiled down: Evans planned his party on his own, leaving the serious competition to his buddy. Tyda's event is sanctioned by the KCBS. That means that Evans can have his party whenever he wants, while Tyda has to have his date approved by KCBS.

So even though The Great American Barbecue & Beer Fest was booked back in October, the KCBS thought it was a good idea to go ahead and have their event on the same day. Bummer nuts.

I know, I know, we were hoping for a little more drama, too. Like someone stole someone's lover -- or at least someone's secret sauce recipe -- and someone else is exacting revenge. A festival war! But no, just two friends and an unfortunate coincidence. Sorry to disappoint. 

So the question remains: Is the Valley big enough to have two successful BBQ events on one Saturday? We sure hope so. Both events are completely different and appeal to two totally separate demographics (Scottsdale for, well, Scottsdale nightclubby types and Chandler for the family folk). We hope that both can be successful enough to return next year --- just on two different days, please .

The Great American Barbecue & Beer Festival
March 26
12 - 8 p.m.
$10 per person, kids 12 and under free
Historic Downtown Chandler

The Arizona BBQ Festival
March 26
10 - 5 p.m.
$10 per person, kids 12 and under free
Scottsdale Waterfront, Old Town

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Shannon Armour
Contact: Shannon Armour