Smoke on the Border

Spread the love

The big shindig… also known as… Smoke on the Border in Gravette, Arkansas. So, we made it. The boys signed up, we hauled everything down, and bam, we were entered. I say we loosely. I helped when they said they needed it or by washing their dishes, but this was all them!

Saturday was the People’s Choice event. Basically, people were allowed to come and walk through the 2 streets blocked off for the event. If people had samples, obviously they could sample it. Samples were cut off around like 2 maybe. Then, the People’s Choice meat was dropped off to the church around the corner at 5 pm. People could buy wrist bands for $10 and they basically got all you can eat meat plus possible sides. Sunday was the main event. So they had the option of entering in 4 categories… pulled pork, brisket, ribs, and/or chicken. The awards were held at the Methodist Church as were all things turned in. And bam, it was all over but the cleanup.

Smoke on the Border

It is sponsored by the Gravette Chamber of Commerce. They work in conjunction with KCBS (Kansas City BBQ Society) as this is a KCBS Contest. Please don’t ask me what that means, I don’t know. Ask hubs, he’ll have a better idea than I do. Remember, he and Jared are the ones that did their research.

This year there were 29 teams from Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, South Dakota, and Texas.

Like my photobomber?


Saturday was the day for People’s Choice. Everyone was allowed to move in equipment into the designated area on Friday night to set up. During the day on Saturday, people were able to walk through the area and check things out. 

It was funny to listen to passersby because a lot of people didn’t know what was going on. I noticed flyers on the windows there on Main Street where we were camped out, but it was interesting. So I’m not sure if it wasn’t promoted a lot or not. I’d actually never been to Gravette so…

We actually had samples. We did pulled pork, smoked chicken dip, and beans. 

People’s Choice

Just about time for turn in for people’s choice. At the end, it was a little hectic trying to get it all done.

Just the photographer here trying to stay out of the way but get her pictures too. On a side note… the money raised from the wrist bands goes to help with scholarships. The guy who was in charge saw me taking pictures and said I should have to buy a permit since he was out to raise money…

Time for Turn in. And they’re off!

All over But…

Then it was all over for the day. I guess the fat lady sang? ha! We were set up right in front of the Ambulance station. Jared is friends with all of them so they came to see us. It was a lot of fun. It was like they had groupies… just kidding :).

And then it was time for bed… but not really. What? Okay… Well, they put a brisket on the smoker at around 11 pm that night. Then every 2 hours they were up checking on it. Don’t worry, I woke up every time hubby’s alarm went off just so I could steal his pillow. Then when he came back I gave it back.


I guess the middle of the night didn’t work so well for hubby and his phone. whoops.

Sunday morning we had biscuits and gravy for breakfast. I made the biscuits on Friday and brought them down. They were excellent on Friday. They were just okay on Sunday. Hubby tried warming them up in the smoker. Didn’t work. They got a smokey flavor and weren’t really warm. Bummer.

Sunday was a little stressful. They have a 10-minute window to turn in their stuff. You didn’t want to be too early or too late. So I was timekeeper but I annoyed them. I wear a real watch. My watch though is set a couple of minutes fast. And so I kept having to refer to my phone or I would give them an ish time if I knew we had plenty of time. I also took the opportunity to wash dishes in the camper for them. 1) so we didn’t have so much to do for clean up and 2) I figured they’d need some of those things again.

The weather was friggin fabulous! OMG, you couldn’t have asked for better weather. In fact, I got a slight sunburn. And we got melted butter. It was like 10:30 or 11 am. Does that tell you about the beautiful weather?


And here are the results (from the Smoke on the Border Facebook Page)

Thanks to all the teams that traveled to our little corner of Arkansas and help put this on, you can’t have a BBQ contest without cooks and we are blessed some of the best. From Gravette to South Dakota, and down to Lubbock, TX you are all appreciated and we hope to see you back next year. Without further ado- a list of the winners:

Kid’s Q 10 & under- Ayva Mondragon form Springfield, MO ( Ayva is now a 2 time in a row 10 & under Smoke on the Border Champion)

Kid’s Q 11 & up- Jacob Bono from Romance, AR

Anything Butt- Michael Steakley from Gravette, AR

People’s Choice- Smiley Mondragon from Springfield, MO (Ayva’s Dad) ^^^^^^^^^

The Best

  • Chicken- Smooth Smoke, Head cook Jack Hoke from Springfield, MO
  • Pork Ribs- Buffalo’s BBQ Head cook Donny Teel from Sperry, OK
  • Pork- Razorracks Head cook Drew Davis from Pleasant Plains, AR
  • Brisket- Boomerang BBQ Head cook Matt Walker from Lubbock, TX

Reserve Grand Champion Tebo Creek BBQ Head cook Greg Hastie from Belton, MO also received a 700 pin with a 701.726 final total

Grand Champion Boomerang BBQ Head cook Matt Walker from Lubbock, TX also received a 700 pin with a 702.8232 final total

A note on the 700 pin award- this a special award for exceeding 700 total points over the 4 categories. There is also another ‘special’ award for a ‘perfect score’ in any of the 4 categories called a 180. 180 is the highest score attainable in each category, however, we didn’t have any this year.

Congratulations to all who heard their name called and we shall see you for the 4th Annual Smoke on the Border in about a year… Thanks again!

One thought on “Smoke on the Border

  1. Sounds like a lot of fun!!
    On the biscuit topic… My mom makes tea biscuits all the time (not sure if they’d be the same as what you’d use for biscuits & gravy, but I imagine they’d be similar?) – and she always says they are best fresh on the day they are made. Every day after that, they get more dried out. I once planned to make biscuits with jam & whipped cream on top like my Grandma used to make to bring to work as a treat, and my mom told me I’d have to get up early to bake them or else they wouldn’t be that great. There was no way in hell I was getting up earlier to bake so they missed out. LOL!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *