Local BBQ team on fire at major competition

The Hellfire BBQ team from Waconia competed in the Big Island State BBQ Championship held in Albert Lea Aug. 24-25. Considered one of Midwest’s finest BBQ competitions, the event featured more than 50 teams from eight states competing for more than $13,000 in prize money.
Hellfire BBQ, which is sponsored by Mackenthun’s Fine Foods in Waconia, finished 21st overall out of 62 teams and earned the Best New Team Award, which means it automatically will be allowed to compete, at no cost, at Big Island next year.
Team member Fred Weppner said the team did well, considering it had never competed at a professional BBQ event before and was facing competition from some of the top BBQ teams in the country.
Andy Busch, Kelly Busch, Josh Braun, Kim McGregor, Randy McGregor, Joel Moulton and Dr. Jayme Clayton joined Weppner on the Hellfire BBQ team.
The team earned eighth place in the chili category and took eighth and ninth in the BBQ Sauce category (it submitted two entries). Hellfire BBQ also took eighth place in the “Anything But” category for its prime rib sandwich and ninth in “Dessert.”
In Kansas City Barbeque Society categories, Hellfire BBQ took 12th in Pork Shoulder, 13th in Chicken, 30th in Brisket, and 33rd in Ribs.
“These placements were in a field of 62 teams, so we really stacked up very well and proved we can hang with the big boys,”Weppner said. “The organizer of the event, who has been around the BBQ circuit a long time, told us it’s unheard of for a new team to walk away with so many awards.”
Perhaps it should be no surprise that the Hellfire BBQ team did so well — its members have won first place at Mackenthun’s Ribfest for two years running. Andy Busch won Ribfest in 2012 and Weppner took first in 2011.

The Hellfire BBQ team, from left: Andy Busch, Kelly Busch, Josh Braun, Fred Weppner, Kim McGregor, Randy McGregor, and Joel Moulton. Not pictured: Dr. Jayme Clayton. Submitted Photo

The Hellfire BBQ team, from left: Andy Busch, Kelly Busch, Josh Braun, Fred Weppner, Kim McGregor, Randy McGregor, and Joel Moulton. Not pictured: Dr. Jayme Clayton. Submitted Photo

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