Downtown Willoughby rib burn off features free music and plenty of BBQ

What: The Red, White and BBQ Rib Burn Off

Where: Downtown Willoughby

When: noon to 10 p.m. May 19, and noon to 8 p.m. May 20

Why you should go: So many reasons.

  • It’s free. Yes, you have to pay for food and drink, but the musical entertainment, barbecue smells and people-watching is free.
  • Speaking of the entertainment: 24 different musical acts are listed on the event’s website, including Saturday night headliner Lit. If you’ve blocked the late 1990s-early 2000s from your mind, Lit is the band behind “My Own Worst Enemy” and “Zip-Lock.” (The album with those songs, “A Place in the Sun,” is definitely still in my house somewhere.)
  • You can have barbecue, barbecue and more barbecue. Buy ribs by the rib and you’ll taste a variety of preparation, smoke and sauce up and down Erie Street.
  • Speaking of Erie Street: It will be blocked off for this event, which means those 21 and older can drink in the street. And legally drinking where you’re normally not allowed can be fun.
  • You can make a day of it and really enjoy downtown Willoughby. The Willoughby Outdoor Market runs from 8 a.m. to noon in the city hall parking lot. Stop by to get some produce or baked goods, then hang around to get some ribs and beverages. Spend the day popping in and out of shops, bars and restaurants in between barbecue samples.

What you should eat/drink: Some of the vendors listed on the events website include Ballantine, Barrio, Beckham’s B&M, Breckenridge Brewery, Cleveland Whiskey, Crepes in the City, Detroit BBQ Company, Fat Freddies BBQ and Catering, Frank & Tony’s Place, Goose Island, Jose Cuervo, The Morehouse, Nickleby’s, Shock Top, Smoke Ring BBQ, Smokin’ T’s BBQ and Sol.

How to get more information: Visit

Follow Cheryl Sadler on Twitter @sadlercheryl. Image credit: Jonathan Tressler

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