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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 09-28-2012, 09:18 AM   #1
polishdon
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What percentage of the entrance fees typically go towards the pay outs at a competition??

Recently we participated in the largest competition locally. The entrance fee is $275 per team for a 20x30 spot, which most teams require or $210 for a 20x20. There were 65 teams, so let's assume that all but 20 used a 20x30 spot, that's $16,575. According to the KCBS site the total payout was $5,500. Where's that other 11 grand go?? Considering we received a ribbon for 5th place, they didn't hand out a whole lot of trophies. Ice was $5 a bag, the goodie bags are a joke so it's not like they're giving you anything there.

I understand there's some fees to running such a large event for the venue, bands, power etc... But when you calculate in the money they also get from the vendors and sponsors, it sure seems like there's a lot of money going into someone's pocket.

Can someone else that puts events together shed some light on the typical costs vs payout amounts??
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Unread 09-28-2012, 09:38 AM   #2
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Here is a discussion on this topic from earlier this year:

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/sh...d.php?t=128305
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Unread 09-28-2012, 09:42 AM   #3
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First of all, I've never organized a contest and only competed in 9 total. I understand that some of the contest use the extra money to donate to local charities and they have expenses like portable generators for power, but... We have a local contest where the entry is $250 and have 35-40 teams show up and the prize money is $3500 dollars. In my opinion it should be at least $6000. The contest does have sponsors, and that should cover the KCBS costs. I don't think anyone is getting rich off putting together a contest, and I'm sure there are some that lose money, but a little clarity on the where the extra $5,000 goes would be nice.
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Unread 09-28-2012, 03:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polishdon View Post
What percentage of the entrance fees typically go towards the pay outs at a competition??

Recently we participated in the largest competition locally. The entrance fee is $275 per team for a 20x30 spot, which most teams require or $210 for a 20x20. There were 65 teams, so let's assume that all but 20 used a 20x30 spot, that's $16,575. According to the KCBS site the total payout was $5,500. Where's that other 11 grand go?? Considering we received a ribbon for 5th place, they didn't hand out a whole lot of trophies. Ice was $5 a bag, the goodie bags are a joke so it's not like they're giving you anything there.

I understand there's some fees to running such a large event for the venue, bands, power etc... But when you calculate in the money they also get from the vendors and sponsors, it sure seems like there's a lot of money going into someone's pocket.

Can someone else that puts events together shed some light on the typical costs vs payout amounts??

That contest has had small payouts and large entry fees for quite some time. It has never been known for having lots of room or being overly team friendly.
There never seems to be a shortage of teams entered so they must be doing something right.
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Unread 09-28-2012, 04:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polishdon View Post
Recently we participated in the largest competition locally. The entrance fee is $275 per team for a 20x30 spot, which most teams require or $210 for a 20x20. There were 65 teams, so let's assume that all but 20 used a 20x30 spot, that's $16,575. According to the KCBS site the total payout was $5,500. Where's that other 11 grand go??
If you go to the Oink's website and bring up the application, it is stated in a bubble near the top that there are "over $15,000 in cash and prizes."

Maybe the KCBS website accidentally omitted the "1." Of course, $5500 may have been stated on the original application by accident when it was turned in.
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Unread 09-29-2012, 03:50 AM   #6
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"Cash and Prizes" means the cost of the trophies, ribbons, etc. is counted in the prize pool.

Financing is very different for all events. They also have different goals, and it also affects payouts and how the teams are treated. Knowing the nature of the event before you enter will help you avoid surprises.

There seem to be 4 main types. I am making broad generalizations here.

Contests run by teams: these events are organized by teams, for teams, for the purpose of having a contest. Generally very team friendy. Rochester, Lexington, Battle of the BBQ Brethren come to mind. Much of the entry fee is returned in the prize pool, with gate and sponsors offsetting other costs.

Contest run by frateral organizations or charities: these events are held to raise money to support the charitable operations of the organization. How welcome the teams are is all over the map, so be careful with these events. Some embrace the teams (Rhode Island, Fryeburg, Harvard), others view the teams as being a necessary evil like having portable toilets or trash pickup. Entry fees and payouts vary widely, but generally lower payouts than other types of contests.

Promotional events: these contests are trying to draw attention to a location or product. There may not even be a gate fee. Most of the prize pool is returned to the teams. In some cases, the sponsor funds...and can have substantial payouts. Examples include Sam's Club, Harpoon, New London, Troy, The Jack.

Commerical Events: These are designed to make money for profit. Vendors, product sponsors, and gate can all play a role here. Since these generally have to be large events to be a commerical success, there is the potential for large payouts here. They depend on the teams, so you should be treated well. Example: Smoke on the Water contests
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Unread 09-29-2012, 07:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muzzlebrake View Post
That contest has had small payouts and large entry fees for quite some time. It has never been known for having lots of room or being overly team friendly.
There never seems to be a shortage of teams entered so they must be doing something right.
That's what I'm getting at. Comparing Oink to say Roc City Rib Fest, it seems we're not getting much for our entrance. Roc City rolls out the red carpet, garbage plates for dinner mmmmmm, donuts and coffee, killer location, calls for the top 20 etc.......

Guess we'll be taking a hard look at whether we support Oink again in the future.
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Unread 09-29-2012, 08:34 AM   #8
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Im not sure if this applies here but sometimes whats stated in the kcbs website is old information. Organizers have to turn paperwork in early(december prior year) to guarantee their date and that includes the guaranteed prize pool. In december that may be a lowball number due to unknowns in sponsorships and teams. As the event ball gets rilling that num er increases and should be listed on the event website to keep teams informed but kcbs may still reflect old info. I know our event has over 10k in cash and 5k more in prizes(not including trophies)....but the kcbs website reflected a smaller number.

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Unread 09-29-2012, 02:34 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by polishdon View Post
That's what I'm getting at. Comparing Oink to say Roc City Rib Fest, it seems we're not getting much for our entrance. Roc City rolls out the red carpet, garbage plates for dinner mmmmmm, donuts and coffee, killer location, calls for the top 20 etc.......

Guess we'll be taking a hard look at whether we support Oink again in the future.
Personally I haven't been back since 2007. It was kind of fun with the pumpkin cannon, the fall festival, great haunted house and they even had the Charile Daniels Band. All that being said I just didn't get a warm and fuzzy feeling and for me it's a 6 hour haul. Combine that with comments I have heard from other teams, I just chose not to go back. In all fairness though and to be honest, if it were closer ( OK much closer)I might have put up with its quirks and gone but the prize pool would have to be more than this years.

Historically they paid pretty well. In 2009 they paid $10225 & had 58 teams, 2010 $6400/51; 2011 $8625/57. Not sure what the deal with this year was but it does seem a little out of whack from prior years.
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Unread 09-29-2012, 11:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red Valley BBQ View Post
If you go to the Oink's website and bring up the application, it is stated in a bubble near the top that there are "over $15,000 in cash and prizes."

Maybe the KCBS website accidentally omitted the "1." Of course, $5500 may have been stated on the original application by accident when it was turned in.
KCBS only lists the cash. What's a $500 item to one person isn't always a $500 value to another.
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Unread 09-30-2012, 09:35 AM   #11
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As an organizer for a KCBS cookoff here in the midwest I would like to offer my 2 cents on this subject. First, our entry fee is very low compared to other contests, ($125). We give free electric, free water, all the free ice you need, a free case of bottled water for the teams, and a nice goodie bag with useful things inside. We have held our contest for 4 years now and have had teams entered as follows, first year 36, second year 42, third year 33 and this year only 25 teams came because we changed the date of the contest. Since the second year we have given away $5,000 cash. We also give away trophies to the GC and RGC and the top five teams in each meat category and the dessert category. We give ribbons to the 6th through 10th teams in each of these categories. We also give trophies for first through third in a Friday night Cook's Choice contest and a Saturday People's Choice contest. With all that being said, KCBS only list our cookoff of having a prize pool of $3500. I was told that only the four meat category pay outs count and all the other stuff doesn't count. So when anyone who is interested in our contest looks at the web site or Bullsheet they see the $3500 and not all the rest of what we offer. Now go back to the number of teams we have and you can see that having 42 teams at $125 and paying out $5000 is a lot easier to cover than 25 teams at $125 and paying out $5000. My point is that you can't judge a book by its cover and you are not going to make much money putting on a BBQ contest. Finally, I would like to say that we are looking forward to our 5th Annual cook off and hope that everyone who has come to our contest in the past will have as good a time next year as they say they have had at our other contests. Sorry for the rambling but I hope this shows there is more important things in a contest than just what the bottom line is at the end of the day. Thanks
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