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Prairie City News

Hope you’re hungry PC EMS’ ‘Prairie Pig Out’ contest kicks off Saturday

Get your bibs ready – the Prairie City EMS’ second annual “Prairie Pig Out/Cookout Contest” is only a few days away.

With a variety of fun activities in the line-up for the weekend cookout at Garden Square Park, the event organizers said they hope residents from all over Jasper County will come down to Prairie City Saturday to have fun and support a good cause.

“I’m excited for the whole event itself – the smells, the food, the people – all that good stuff. Everyone downtown will smell it,” Mandi Bright of Prairie City EMS said. “Everyone on the department volunteers because we love the people and we love to be there for the community.”

For the second year, the Prairie City EMS meat smokeout fundraiser will raise money to help purchase equipment for the EMS team – from radio upgrades to a cot loader.

The event will kick-off at 7 a.m. with a tasty pancake breakfast that will help families raise money for the PCM Middle School’s field trip to Washington, D.C.

The fun will continue from 2 to 6 p.m. as patrons will be given the opportunity to check out an array of neat products from home-baked pastries to Lularoe leggings at the vendor fair. Bright said there are already more than 21 vendors signed up to participate. She said they will be accepting applications the day of the cook out.

Vendor registration is $15. Interested businesses can sign up online at or at the day of the event.

Bright said the kids will also have a lot to do besides enjoying good food or smoking their own meats with hopes of taking first place in the youth division of the cook out. For $10, kids can bounce around on a bounce house, a double slide and a 32-foot-long obstacle course from noon to 8 p.m.

Children can also jump into the Jasper County Farm Bureau’s “AG Across Iowa” trailer starting at 11 a.m. The trailer will feature a tractor simulator, pork puzzles and many other educational activities.

At 3 p.m., Stampede will host a bags tournament. Registration for the cornhole contest will begin at 2 p.m.

Despite this list of fun activities, there is no doubt the highlight of the day will be the slide-off-the-bone meats that will be smoked and prepared for the two smokeout contests that .

After the department teaming up with Jasper County Farm Bureau, contest participates will have a variety of different meats to sample that evening. With two contests, separated into four categories – pork, beef, poultry, combo/specialty, event patrons will be sure to leave with a full stomach with the purchase of a $15 wristband. Kids six and under can eat for free.

And just in case smokeout attendees are really hungry, Bright said there will be additional food included with the purchase of a wristband.

“The smokers only have so much meet they can give out to the customers. So we are going to have the additional so they can get full,” Bright said. “We will have about nine smokers, as far as we know ... I’m excited for us to get more smokers, just because this is just a fun event. Everyone will have the most unique way to prepare or cook the meat.”

The organizers said the smoked meat eat will begin at 6 p.m. There will also be a beer garden open near the square at this time.

Each category will be awarded a first and second prize. The entry fee to compete in the contest is $25 before June 1, $35 after the pre-registration date. They will be accepting participants the day of the event. To register online, visit

The group will also raffle off a smoker, similar to last year, at a cost of $5 a ticket. There will also be a 50/50 raffle.

“Come out and visit us,” Bright said. “It will be fun.”

For more information, call Bright at 515-201-4405, Amanda Vanekeren at 515-240-3969 or find Prairie Pig Out/Cookout Contest on Facebook.

Contact Anthony Victor Reyes at

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