Where's the Beef?

Berea stands up to be counted again in the rounds of Memorial Day ribfests.

Phantom Planet alt-rock The O.C.
If Cleveland's ribfest can't lure you downtown, Berea's National Rib Cookoff makes a perfect substitute to satisfy your barbecue-beef hankerings. "People just love ribs," says Marie Pochatek, who's coordinating the 10th annual suburban blowout. "I don't care what kind of entertainment you have — they come for the ribs." Along with nationally known bands, classic-car displays, kids' activities, and a laid-back family vibe, the fest features 10 competitive grillers from as far as Texas. "Those teams pick out their best ribs and work on them all weekend. On Sunday, they bring the ribs over to be judged, and they make a beautiful presentation," says Pochatek. "That's a big deal to get that trophy." The grilling runs from noon to 11 p.m. today, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. tomorrow and Sunday, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday at the Cuyahoga County Fairgrounds, 164 Eastland Road in Berea. Admission is $5 to $8. Call 440-234-5181 or visit www.berearib.com.
Fri., May 23, 12-11 p.m.; May 24-25, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Mon., May 26, 11 a.m.-9 p.m., 2008
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