After six years of tweaking and perfecting their BBQ recipe, Monica and Jim Angelo are confident that this will be the year they take home the $750 grand prize at Forest Park’s Rib Fest which is set for Saturday.
The couple from Forest Park plans to set up shop at 6 a.m. to begin grilling about 180 pounds of baby-back ribs from Wichita Packing Company, where Monica Angelo, a third generation “butcher,” also works as an office manager.
This will be the fourth year the Angelo’s are competing in the annual festival. Last year they took home third place after experimenting with a large smoker instead of the charcoal patio grill they’ve used in the past.
“I think that now we have the machine down and we have a better idea of what we want to do,” said Monica Angelo, 35. “We’re keeping the same form and the same BBQ sauce, we’re just more prepared.”
As for the recipe of her special sauce, well, that’s top secret.
“The sauce is a really good quality barbeque sauce that we just fancy up,” she said. “Beyond that, I can’t say.”
Samples of her ribs – as well as those from the other 21 contestants – may be available to purchase when the Rib Fest opens to the public at noon at Forest Park’s Picnic Grove, 7824 Madison Street. Judging for the contest starts at 5 p.m. and winners will be announced at 7 p.m. Along with the first, second and third place cash prizes, there will also be an award for the best decorated tent or booth.
On top of sampling ribs from the BBQ contest, there will also be a range of other concession stands, as well as live music throughout the day and into the evening.