CEDAR RAPIDS — It’s time to gear up for some finger-lickin’ fun.
The 31st Annual Cedar Rapids BBQ Roundup kicks off at 11 a.m. June 20 and winds up at 5 p.m. June 23 at the McGrath Amphitheatre, 475 First St. SW. Admission is free with a Freedom Festival button; without the button, it’s $3 for adults and free for kids ages 12 and under.
Schedule highlights include:
• June 20, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.: Salute to Veterans, with free admission for veterans, law enforcement and first responders. Admission also will be free over the lunch hour, with the BBQ Bandwagon providing transportation from the downtown area. The Puppy Jake Foundation will be on-site, and new this year is a bags tournament, organized by Iowa Sports Foundation. Music: Kevin B.F. Burt, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Tom Grubb, 1:30 to 3 p.m.; Robbie Michael Band, 4 to 5:30 p.m.; Harvey Headbanger, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.; American Hitmen, 8 to 10 p.m.
• June 21, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: Free lunch admission and the BBQ Bandwagon will be back. Evening activities feature the third annual Canvas and Cocktails event and the second night of the bags tournament. Music: Casey Klein, 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Insanity D.J., 2:30 to 4 p.m.; Danny Whitson, 4:30 to 6 p.m.; The Evan Stock Band, 6:30 to 8 p.m. (second-place Battle of the Bands); Tyler Richton and the High Bank Boys, 8:30 to 10:30 p.m. (winner of the recent Battle of the Bands at Hazzard County).
• June 22, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.: New this year, bicyclists will receive free admission from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Back for the third year is Beerfest from 4 to 7 p.m., a mini event celebrating beer and barbecue. Music: Les Ohlhauser, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; Unincorporated, 2 to 3:30 p.m.; Cedar Junction Band, 4 to 5:30 p.m.; Detour, a band new to the area that puts a twist on crowd favorites from the ’70 through today, 8:30 to 10:30 p.m.
• June 23, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Family Fun Day. Admission is free for kids ages 12 and under for a day filled with family-friendly activities such as bounce houses, face painting, Junior Fire Fighter obstacle course, Paint in the Park, carnival games and more. The awards ceremony will wrap up the day, recognizing the winners of Best BBQ Ribs, Best Pork and People’s Choice.
• Information: McGrathAmphitheatre.com/bbq-roundup