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Jun 20, 2018







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Photos courtesy of Studio Mark Emile Photography.




 16th annual Rock’n Ribfest

When: Friday, June 15, 4 to 11 p.m.; Saturday, June 16, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; and Sunday, June 17, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Anheuser-Busch Brewery, 221 Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack
Cost: $10 general admission at the gate or $7 if purchased online in advance. Free for kids ages 8 and under. Sunday is Military Appreciation Day, during which military personnel can receive free admission when showing ID. All food and drinks and some spvecial activities are priced separately.
Visit: ribfestnh.com
 
Participating “ribbers”
Butch’s Smack Your Lips BBQ
Cowboys BBQ
Gators BBQ
Jack’s Down Home BBQ
Johnson’s BBQ
T-Roy’s BBQ
 
Other featured foods
Apple crisp
Baked potatoes
Bloomin’ onion
Bruster’s Ice Cream
Cannolis
Cheesesteaks
Chicken and pork kabobs
Cotton candy
Cupcakes, cookies and cake pops
French fries
Fried dough
Fudge
Kettle corn
Lemonade
Pizza
Popcorn
Roasted sweet corn
Shaved ice





Ribs that rock
Ribfest returns for its 16th year

06/20/18



 By Matt Ingersoll

mingersoll@hippopress.com
 
Nationally renowned barbecue restaurants will join dozens of local vendors for the 16th annual Rock’n Ribfest, an event that offers fair foods, craft beer, live music, a cornhole tournament, family entertainment and a whole lot of ribs.
The event, organized by the Rotary Club of Nashua West and traditionally held every Father’s Day weekend, will return to Anheuser-Busch Brewery in Merrimack from Friday, June 15, through Sunday, June 17.
Participating barbecue restaurants are dubbed “ribbers” at the festival, offering half and whole racks of ribs, pulled pork sandwiches, burgers and more, with some including homemade rubs and sauces, and sides liked baked beans. The vendors often represent several states; among this year’s ribbers will be Butch’s Smack Your Lips BBQ out of New Jersey, Gators BBQ from Florida and Johnson’s BBQ from Virginia Beach.
Rotary Club treasurer and marketing committee member Jordan Guagliumi said being able to sample ribs from a variety of restaurants in one place where you wouldn’t otherwise get to is one of the event’s biggest draws. 
“We do have a lot of vendors who are out of state who come back every year, because they it’s a well-run event, and they like New Hampshire, the people and the fact that it’s an event for nonprofits,” Guagliumi said, adding that many of the ribbers travel to other barbecue and rib-themed events across the country. 
But even for those who don’t like ribs, the Rock’n Ribfest will feature local vendors — like Bruster’s Ice Cream and City Moose Cafe & Catering — with options like pizza, fried dough, roasted sweet corn, apple crisp, cotton candy, fudge, popcorn and kettle corn.
Guagliumi said this year the Rotary Club will be introducing a cornhole tournament for the first time, to be held on Saturday, June 16. The deadline to sign up online has passed, but participants can still sign up for $50 for a team (or $25 for individual registrants, not including your admission ticket) and compete in double-elimination games to win cash prizes. The games begin at 2 p.m., with sign ups at 12:30 p.m., according to Guagliumi.
The fourth annual Rib Ride, to also be held on Saturday, is a 25-mile bike ride that will begin near the main gates of the Ribfest, at the parking lot of BAE Systems in Merrimack, and travel through rural areas of Merrimack, Nashua and Amherst. Then on Sunday, June 17, the Immediate Care Ribfest 5 Miler Road Race will be held, which includes a kids’ fun run at 8:15 a.m. followed by the race at 9 a.m. Runners will gain early admission to the Ribfest at 10 a.m.
Other staples of the event include hot air balloon rides, photo opportunities with Anheuser-Busch Clydesdale, several inflatable bounce houses for kids, face-painting, clowns, beer tastings and a full schedule of live bands throughout all three days featuring a variety of genres such as rock and roll, acoustic, soul and blues.
“It’s a great family event where people can bring the kids and enjoy great music and food,” Guagliumi said. “It’s safe to say we easily get over 20,000 people over the course of the weekend, and the entire net of the event goes back into the community.” 
 





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