View Full Version : How much do you spend?

03-14-2012, 04:39 PM
Hey guys. Been a while since I've been on. Thinking seriously about entering a contest or two and was hoping I could ask a few questions. Mainly, how much does a contest usually run you out of pocket? I may just want to enter one doing just butts or just butts and ribs. Do you sell the meat after the contest? I heard Myron say once that he doesn't eat it. What do you guys do? Mainly just wondering what I'm in for and how much it may cost me.

03-14-2012, 04:49 PM
Our recent review in planning for 2012 KCBS events has our spending right around $700. This includes entry, meats, sauces, rubs, etc., and consumables such as charcoal, smoke wood, aluminum foil, pans, gloves and paper towels.

It does not include travel costs, personal food, beverages or any ancillary entries.

This sport is not for the weak of heart!

As for leftovers, vacuum pack them and sell them at work, take them home to the kids (until they complain of too much barbecue!), or give it away to friends, family or the local food bank.

Good luck jumping in the pool!


03-14-2012, 04:53 PM
between 600-800 on a KCBS contest.

03-14-2012, 04:57 PM
same here.... 700-800 per. down from $1000,m since we scaled back on the recreational foods.. like 20 lb prime ribs and bottles of cabo. :rolleyes:

03-14-2012, 06:01 PM
We are in the $500-$600 range.

Lake Dogs
03-14-2012, 06:55 PM
600 - 800 for the KCBS/FBA/GBA type; 1200-1500 for the MBN type. I dont sell food. Extra is frozen and/or given away.

03-14-2012, 07:09 PM
$600-700 for a local event. $700 - $1200 for an out of state event.

Smoke'n Ice
03-14-2012, 07:42 PM
I plan on a $1,000 bill when I hook up the trailer. Some are more and some are less but the average is that. I either give the meat away to friends (my kids want eat it anymore) or, depending on where I traveled to for the contest, throw it away. HD rules and today litiguous society precluded me, due to my business license and insurance, from doing otherwise.

Bourbon Barrel BBQ
03-14-2012, 07:46 PM
I'd say we will be 700-800 this year for KCBS contest.

03-14-2012, 07:49 PM
Too Much....

Over $500 under $1000 for KCBS. Less for IBCA / Texas Gulf Coast due to lower entry fees and shorter travel distance.

03-14-2012, 08:04 PM
Around $500

03-14-2012, 08:50 PM
I did an excel spreadsheet on the events we are planning on competing in with all of the expenses itemized out. The average cost is between $750-$850. With gas prises on the rise this number will go up thou.

03-14-2012, 08:55 PM
$600-$900, eat the leftovers all week for lunch :mmph:

JD McGee
03-14-2012, 09:33 PM
300-600 per for PNWBA...depending on how far we have to drive.

03-14-2012, 09:40 PM
Yeah, anywhere from $300-$500. Thank God for the meat sponsor.

03-14-2012, 09:51 PM
It costs less than it used to. When we started there were 3 KCBS events in Georgia, now there are 20. With diesel over four bucks a gallon, hauling a rig to neighboring states would add a couple hundred bucks to the tab, but now days we stay in-state and rarely drive more than three hours to a contest.

Since you are in Marietta, you'll find KCBS is the sanctioning body that has the most events close to you. If you are willing to travel south of the Atlanta metro, FBA, GBA and MBN events are more common.

There is no cost savings for not cooking all four meats at KCBS or FBA events beyond the meat. MBN and GBA events may only charge for the categories entered, but you'll need to cook more meat per category because of the two rounds of judging. The bottom line is that by the time you add up everything it takes to cook at a contest, the slight difference between entering one or two categories and doing them all, if you have the cooker space.

If coming up with $700 for a contest doesn't seem feasible, I'd reccommend looking into non-sanctioned "backyard" events. These are harder to find since there is no central directory provided by a sanctioning organization. I know of a couple near to you - there is one in Acworth and another in Cave Spring. Entry fees for such events vary widely, but are usually substantially less than the $200-$300 you can expect for a KCBS event in Georgia.

03-15-2012, 12:04 AM
I don't want to know!!!

Smokin' Bad Habit
03-15-2012, 06:50 AM
500 + sell your left overs if you can! pray for catering gigs and and vending jobs....allways be on the hunt for sponsors!

03-15-2012, 07:49 AM
If you can cook a KCBS for $500, I would love to know how you can do that.

Entry fee is always around $250 in the southeast and meat is $200 without batting an eye and if pork prices stay low.

I dont see much on our shopping list that we could cull and the bill is over $700.

early mornin' smokin'
03-15-2012, 08:00 AM
we lucked out and scored a meat sponsor, and working on an egg dealer sponsorship also so that will cover charcoal. But we used to spend over a $1000. Like phil said, too much ancillary stuff like expensive food and booze. Realistically its more like 800 if any traveling is involved

ROF, Texas
03-15-2012, 08:01 AM
700-900 is the range we tend to spend. The variable is the recereational food, drink & misc. We host the top talent at a Texas based music festival and this number can easily triple.
This makes $12.00/lb brisket at the local Q joint darn cheap!

03-15-2012, 08:48 AM
$1,000 is the budget.

03-15-2012, 08:58 AM
$500-600 and all we eat at a contest is Ramen Noodles:wink:

03-15-2012, 09:02 AM
$600 to $800. It is a very expensive hobby, but I have met many great friends along the way! Can't put a price on friendships :)

Big George's BBQ
03-15-2012, 09:22 AM
Too Much

03-15-2012, 09:29 AM
$1,000 give or take. More this year since I have a few comps that are 5+ hours away pulling the trailer getting 8 MPG and Gas costing an arm and a leg.

If they are close, I can usually get close to 800.

03-15-2012, 01:01 PM

03-15-2012, 01:30 PM
I'd say between $600 and $800 depending on distance.

03-15-2012, 02:59 PM
Please husband, don't see this thread! EEK!

The Virginian
03-15-2012, 03:06 PM
Its expensive, and that is an important reason to share the pain and the glory with team members. With three team members, that's $200-300 a piece per competition, depending on how far you drive and how much meat you cook and so on. I don't know how single person/family teams do it, unless they happen to be good enough to win a lot of prize money, which is getting harder and harder to do.

Our team has probably $500 in costs per competition. We stay pretty close to home, and we are fortunate enough to have a brisket sponsor, Roseda Farms. That saves us a good $120-140 per contest right there. Split the cost among the members and it comes out to a pretty reasonable price for a great weekend! Sometimes we even win a little something, that goes back into the team kitty for future contests.


03-15-2012, 03:08 PM
I don't know how single person/family teams do it, unless they happen to be good enough to win a lot of prize money, which is getting harder and harder to do.

We only do a few comps a year, and forgo any other expensive hobbies (want to buy some golf clubs? :heh:)

03-15-2012, 04:22 PM
$1,000 is the budget.

Supervisor rich?

03-15-2012, 04:48 PM
same here.... 700-800 per. down from $1000,m since we scaled back on the recreational foods.. like 20 lb prime ribs and bottles of cabo. :rolleyes:

I like your ziti better than your prime , glad u cut back

Jeff Hughes
03-15-2012, 05:02 PM
If you can cook a KCBS for $500, I would love to know how you can do that. .

Entry 200
Chicken(two packs smart chicken)15
Wood, coal, rubs, injections, sauce, pans, etc-75
Gas-40(I rarely go more than 90 miles for a comp)
Total--505(okay gas is up...)

This is Tulsa Oklahoma, lots of comps close by...

I cook alone...

Donny Teel coached me on the amount of meat to cook...

03-15-2012, 05:18 PM
I am also around $500, not including liquor or gas.

$200 Entry
$200 Meat(2 Briskets, 2 Butts, 3 Racks Ribs, 20 Chicken)
$100 Supplies(Pellets, Rubs, Sauce, Foil, paper towels, etc.)

big brother smoke
03-15-2012, 05:19 PM
OK, so I am fresh off a comp.

Entry fee $250 + $50 (RV Space) = $300
Gas 172 miles round trip = $ 90
Meat and Produce = $200 +/-
rubs, pans, sauce, injections,etc. = $80
Approximate total = $670

I do not count booze and munchies because, I am going to eat and drink on any given weekend.

03-15-2012, 06:05 PM
Supervisor rich?

you know it! :third:

03-16-2012, 07:54 AM
I don't know how single person/family teams do it, unless they happen to be good enough to win a lot of prize money, which is getting harder and harder to do.

We are like John. This is our hobby and the only one we do. Gave up the boating and went straight BBQ comps. It is only my wife and myself (sometimes her parents) so we foot it all. It's not easy, but I space out the comps so it doesn't kill me. I would love to do back to back weekends, but cannot do it, so I go every four weeks or so.

03-16-2012, 09:21 AM
The question on meat cost for us is who will be coming out to visit. I agree 600-800 for meat to enter all categories and have plenty of meat to select the judging samples from. However, if you have quite a few people come out or stop by that are expecting samples, your costs can skyrocket. You always have more friends than you think when you enter a BBQ competition.

03-16-2012, 09:47 AM
usually costs us about $2000, thats entry fee and everything we need to vend with.