Fisher Community Center to host BBQ Championship

Wet grounds at Riverview Park have forced Iowa State BBQ Championship organizers to move the June 21 and 22 event to Marshalltown’s Fisher Community Center.

Event chairperson Bob Wenner, of Marshalltown, said the decision was reached after extensive discussion with the Iowa State BBQ Championship board of directors.

“The board believed it was in the best interest of the contestants and the public to hold the event at a dry location,” Wenner said. “The grounds of the Fisher Community Center will allow us to hold the contest successfully and with only minor changes to the agenda. That property is centrally located, and has been utilized for the Linn Creek Art Festival over the years, and that factored into our decision.”

The contest and related events will be held on the FCC’s west side, near the Martha Ellen Tye Theater.

Parking will be available at the former Econo-Foods lot which borders event grounds to the west.

Spectators and contestants should not use customer parking at businesses on West Anson Street or nearby.

Wenner said the Coldwell-Banker Premier Real Estate office taxi service will not be available.

At Riverview, the free-of-charge rides were provided by office staff and volunteers using golf carts to transport attendees to the park from parking blocks away.

“We’ve appreciated Coldwell-Banker’s assistance over the years, but the board believed the proximity of the former Econo-Foods parking lot would eliminate the need for taxi service,” he said. “And traffic on West Anson Street would create problems for golf-cart drivers and others.”

While the event will run two days as originally planned, grounds will be open to the public June 21 only and the approximately 66 barbecue teams will have exclusive use June 22.

“We will not have as much parking available Saturday as we will Friday,” Wenner said of the decision. “But, the public is welcome to come down Friday night to have fun, good barbecue and listen to live music from 5 to 11 p.m.”

Marshalltown’s Loose Neutral is one of several music acts scheduled to perform.

Wet grounds at Riverview have caused postponements for two events this month.

A June 1 Animal Rescue League fundraiser was postponed due to wet grounds, as was a June 8 program scheduled at the dog park.

“On behalf of the ISBC board of directors, I wish to especially thank the Chamber of Commerce for use of the FCC and all who have helped us find a suitable location,” Wenner said. “The contestants, suppliers and vendors have all been cooperative after we made the decision to relocate.”

For additional information contact Wenner,641-752-3302,