In 1989 Garry Roark entered his first barbecue competition just up road in Cleveland at the Mississippi Delta city’s Octoberfest.
That began a tradition that is well known in Yazoo and far beyond, and it’s a tradition that continues even after Mr. Roark, who died on August 27 at age 66, is gone.
And so it seems appropriate that the Ubons team earned the Grand Championship title last weekend at Octoberfest in Cleveland, the place where it all began. Garry Roark may no longer be here in person, but his influence remains as strong as ever.
The next generation of Ubons pitmasters, led by Erin Campbell and Garry Roark’s grandson Jacob Scott, earned first place in ribs, seventh place whole hog and ninth place in pulled pork along with the top prize in a contest that featured over 50 teams from all over the country.
Ubons also earned stage-winning trophies at Hogs for the Cause and Memphis in May during this year’s competition season.
Such success is remarkable by anyone’s standards, but it has come to be expected in the Ubons family tradition that entered the competition world 29 years ago.
We wouldn’t be surprised if the same thing is true 29 years from now.