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Columbus barbecue team wins cookoff


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Submitted photo / From left, Dan Baughman and senior vice president Mr. Hasegawa, of competition sponsor Arvin Sango, present the grand champion cutting board from the 13th annual Madison Ribberfest Indiana State Championship Barbeque Cookoff to Kempis Wilkerson and Jimmy Tindell of the Big JTs Smokin BBQ team from Columbus. Drew Garrett, right, of the competition committee looks on.
Submitted photo / From left, Dan Baughman and senior vice president Mr. Hasegawa, of competition sponsor Arvin Sango, present the grand champion cutting board from the 13th annual Madison Ribberfest Indiana State Championship Barbeque Cookoff to Kempis Wilkerson and Jimmy Tindell of the Big JTs Smokin BBQ team from Columbus. Drew Garrett, right, of the competition committee looks on.


Big JT’s Smokin’ BBQ, of Columbus, won the grand champion title at the 13th annual Madison Ribberfest Indiana State Championship Barbeque Cookoff on Aug. 16 in Madison.

Team members Jimmy Tindell and Kempis Wilkerson are only the second Indiana team to win this event. They also competed in the dessert category and had a perfect score of 180, but finished second on a tie-breaker, according to a media release.

The victory qualifies Big JT’s to compete in the World Food Championships in Las Vegas in November and at the American Royal championship in Kansas City, Mo., next year. Big JT’s also will be in a drawing to determine Indiana’s team at the Jack Daniels competition this fall.

Madison Ribberfest is a barbecue and blues festival held annually on the third weekend in August along the Ohio River waterfront in Madison. It is sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbeque Society, the world’s largest organization of barbeque and grilling enthusiasts. Competitors are judged in chicken, ribs, pork and beef brisket to determine the overall champion.

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