Rip’s Ribs Cook Off This Saturday

On The Square in Eastland!

EASTLAND, TX – A smoke-filled day of fun is set for this Saturday in downtown Eastland when the 8th Annual Rip’s Ribs Cook Off takes place. Kicking off at 9 A.M. with a mandatory cook’s meeting the event runs through the day ending up at 5:30 pm when the winners are announced. Vendors of all types will be set up for those in attendance.

Entertainment throughout the day will include the following Jazz Bands on the square in the following order– Howard Payne University, Godley HS, Hardin-Simmons University, Clyde HS, Doc Rockin’ Band, Jim Ned Jazz Ensemble, Eastland HS Jam Session, Grandview HS, and Heartland Jazz Combo.

Judging of the St. Louis Style pork ribs will begin at 4 p.m. Awarding of the $2,600 in prizes will begin at 5:30, with the top ribs taking home $1,000, second place receiving $750, third place will take home $500 with 4th and 5th places netting $250 and $150 respectively. Cash prizes and trophies will also be awarded to the 1st place winner in People’s Choice Categories: Appetizers, Beans, Desserts, and Meats.

Judging this year’s competition St. Louis Style Ribs will be:

Lindsay Flores – I am the General Manager at Lytle Land and Cattle in Abilene, Texas. I have been employed here since June 12th of 2017. Starting off as a server, then being promoted to Front of House Manager, and now General Manager. I am very active in our community, my passion for serving people and helping others is my motivation to keep striving for success. I serve on three committees, I am now the Senior Vice President for the Abilene Chapter of the Texas Restaurant Association, I actively participate in Abilene Young Professional’s serving on the hospitality portion of the Summit that we do in Abilene every year. During my downtime I help with the auction for CBB, supporting Breast Cancer Awareness. I look forward to being a guest in the Eastland Community and thank you so much for the opportunity.

Lisa Benson – CEO, Smarter by Big, LP the capital development company founded via the 2015 divesture of Ellipse Communications, Inc. I recently acquired a portfolio of commercial buildings in downtown Eastland, TX. Working with the economic development team for the city of Eastland, I will continue acquiring with the intent of repositioning historic buildings in the courthouse square and provide upscale loft-style rental homes and commercial offerings street-side. My dream is to open the Eight Day Restaurant, allowing me to show off my personal culinary skills and refined pallet resulting from extensive international “foodie” travel. Recently, having read Salt Fat Acid Heat by Samin Norsrat, my understanding of the alchemy of cooking will certainly come into play. Looking forward to exchanging stories with the competitors and fellow judges!

Mark Young – I am the CEO for the Boys& Girls Club of Abilene. I was Rudy’s sidekick for five years on Waking Up Country with Rudy and Mark, but Covid-19 stopped studio time. I’m a father of six and love to bbq and check out what others magically do with their ribs.

Dylan Smith – I’ve grown up and lived in Texas my entire life. I lived near Corpus, then moved to San Antonio. I attended Texas A&M University and graduated with a B.S. of Meteorology. I came to Abilene about 5 years ago and have since moved my way up to Chief Meteorologist of KRBC for over 2 year now. I know a lot about the weather… The second thing I think I know the most about is BBQ.

Jay Towell – Began with AIDS in June of 2013 as the Director of Student Nutrition. Jay has served as a Director of Student Nutrition since 1995. Prior to entering his current field, he had 15 years of restaurant experience. Mr. Towell received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Dallas Baptist University and is a member of the Texas Association of School Nutrition and the School Nutrition Association. Jay has also served as the president of the Child Nutrition Directors Associations of North Texas. He is married to Ann- Marie and they have three children Alyssa, Collin, and McKayla. He can’t wait to come back to Eastland to judge the Cook-off this year!

Bill Myers – a long-time resident of Lake Leon and is known as the best rib cooker on his cove! He is a retired drilling supervisor for the oil field, which means he knows a little something about everything. Bill has competed in several Texas State Cook Off Competitions and knows his way around a pit and a rib bone. In his retirement, Bill can be found out fishing on his boat or enjoying camping and firing up the grill on race weekends at NASCAR’s Texas Motor Speedway with fellow race enthusiasts.

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