The 2012 Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown!

The 2012 Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown!

If you are into barbecue, then Las Vegas was the place to be when a top prize money BBQ championship is going on!  Sunny, breezy and cool spring temperatures make for perfect BBQ weather in the Mojave Desert, so let the mouthwatering aroma of sumptuous barbecue be your guide! 

Everything and anything that has to do with barbecue was on display or for sale at the 2012 Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown! BBQ grill and BBQ smoker manufacturers displayed their goods throughout the vast outdoor exposition grounds at the Mandalay Bay Casino Resort on the Las Vegas Strip.  There were plenty of state of the art BBQ cooking utensils for sale, classic BBQ grills and custom BBQ trailers were on sale too. Tailor made BBQ sauces and dry rub seasoning mixes were up for grabs everywhere, so there were plenty of opportunities to do some sampling too.

 The aroma of good mouth watering BBQ could be smelled from miles away on the day of the event!  There was so much BBQ to sample and taste at this event, that I would have gained 100 pounds if I had tried every item that was offered at the Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown!

Many award winning BBQ competitors had their championship trophies on display and adding a Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown trophy to the collection would certainly earn bragging rights. The 2012 Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown had a grand prize pool of $60,000 dollars, so there was plenty of inspiration for putting together an effort.

Because the Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown was held at Mandalay Bay on the Las Vegas Strip, the attendance numbers were high.  The Outdoor Expo was held in the Mandalay Bay Convention Center next to the BBQ Throwdown.  This was a great combination of events and this is why so many visitors showed up.  

There literally was a sea of barbecue munching people roaming the grounds of this years BBQ championship.  Everybody that had BBQ food for sale was making plenty of money! I attempted to get the culinary arts school that I was attending at that time to organize a competitive BBQ vending team for the event, but they could not fit the small entry fee into their budget.  As it turned out, the return on investment would have done much better more than break even, because I saw many vendors making over $1,000 per hour while the crowd was in a full feeding frenzy. No matter how you look at it, BBQ does sell, especially in a Las Vegas championship BBQ competition where a big jackpot is at stake!

At this years event, there were several great BBQ cooking styles.  Chicago style smoked meats with the sauce on the side, Chinese Hunan BBQ, Voodoo Zombie (Jerk BBQ), St Louis style BBQ, Memphis dry rub BBQ, western sweet BBQ, Texas style hot spicy BBQ, North Carolina pulled meat BBQ, and Georgia/Florida style tangy spicy sauced ribs were just some of the great regional styles of BBQ cooking at the BBQ Throwdown. This only goes to show that variety certainly is the spice of barbecue life!

Many sponsors of the Throwdown had their wares on display.  Jack Daniels provided the entertainment.  Dodge Ram Trucks had a huge pickup truck obstacle course.  Bull had some great looking state of the art BBQ equipment and outdoor kitchens on display.  There were plenty of custom BBQ manufacturers offering great items at negotiable prices too.

Of course, there has to be a mechanical bull at a Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown just to make it all official.  Mechanical bull riding is entertainment at its best, especially after a rider gains confidence after having a few beers too many!  

Strolling around from one event tent to the next and sampling BBQ at the 2012 Las Vegas BBQ Throwdown was a genuine fun way to spend the afternoon!  Getting a belly full of tasty barbecue and having a good time is what a championship barbecue event is all about and you sure will meet a lot of interesting BBQ characters while there.

If you are into BBQ of any shape, style or flavor, then a barbecue championship is the place to be! The Las Vegas BBQ Championship is an annual event and the location changes every year. If you happen to plan a trip to Sin City during the spring break season, be sure check for this event taking place, because good championship quality barbecue is something that you definitely will not want to miss out on!


Author: wildwestdestinations

I worked as a chef in remote resorts and National Parks, which provided the time to explore western travel destinations. I have a BA Degree in Culinary Management with high honors and currently I am working on a Masters Degree in Adult Education. My food and travel blog writing began as a means to generate income during college and now photo journalism has become my lifestyle.

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