Photo by Rick Pepper - 2013 Ribfest in Riverfront Park, Mankato - Ribbers!
Photo by Rick Pepper - 2013 Ribfest in Riverfront Park, Mankato - Ribbers!

[Featured Photo by Rick Pepper – 2013 RibFest in Riverfront Park, Mankato – Ribbers!]

It’s a RibFest Weekend! In fact it’s Mankato’s 21st Annual RibFest being held at the Vetter Stone Amphitheater.


It begins today, Thursday August 2nd with headliner John Michael Montgomery at 9:30 pm. Not only did I memorize all the words to his hit song, Sold with all my grade school girlfriends, I also purchased his cassette tape a good 25 years ago! I Swear, Be My Baby Tonight, I Can Love You Like That, and Life’s A Dance are just a few songs that I remember singing along to in my childhood bedroom.

I secretly hope he plays all the hits. It’ll be a sing-along night!

At 5:30 pm on Thursday catch the four-piece country band Radio Romance.

Later at 7 pm, the self-described “luckiest man in the world,” country artist, Chris Hawkey plays. Hawkey also produces the radio broadcast of Minnesota Vikings NFL football games for the Vikings Radio Network and is a regular contributor to the Vikings Entertainment Network. Well, there you go, sports fans!


The Friday, August 3rd headliner, Bret Michaels, hits the stage at 9:30 pm. Anyone remember his reality TV show Rock of Love? Pretty sure every rose had its thorn on that one!

Come earlier to see local band Jeremy Poland from IV Play at 5:30 pm. The rock tribute band The Arch Allies hits it at 7:30 pm.

It’s going to be a full night of rocking guitars!


Saturday, RibFest is free from noon until 3 pm.

If you’ve been curious about my original songs, you can catch my set during this time. Did I mention it’s free? Local singer-songwriter Stacy K (me!) hits the stage at 1 pm with her full band. Looking at the overall music lineup, I am one of the only two females on this entire festival! Girl Power!

Rocker, David Sandersfeld, is on at 3 pm. Soulful Jesse Larson plays at 5. The national act Tonic with the hit song, If You Could Only See is on at 7 and headliner Sugar Ray takes the stage at 9:30 with memorable songs, When It’s Over, Every Morning, and Fly to close the night.


Sunday is the last day of the Festival with local act Pour Me on at 1 pm. Closing out the weekend at 3 pm is the tribute to Tom Petty band called Free Fallin’. I do love me some Tom Petty. Even the B-sides are hits.

It is called RibFest!

Enough music! Let’s talk Ribs.

Austin Texas Lightning BBQ has been winning competitions from coast to coast! All the way from Arkansas comes Porky Chicks Barbeque. Big Boned Barbeque hails from Tennessee. Racking up many awards comes the Chicago BBQ Company. Developing their own traditional Australian sauce, Aussom Aussie Barbeque, you guessed it originates from Australia. Last but not least, from the Lone Star State, Cowboys BBQ & Rib Company!

Alongside all the BBQ will be Lolas, Auntie Wendy’s Kettle Corn, Culvers, Carolina Catering, and Snowie’s Shaved Ice.

Wow, I’m hungry!