August 9, 2022


By Neal A. Shipman
Farmer Editor

Who would have ever thought that when Ribfest started some 30 years ago, that it would evolve into the biggest single event to be held in Watford City. Or that it would grow to become one of the premiere events in western North Dakota or among the top events in North Dakota.
Ribfest started when Peggy Hellandsaas and I threw out the idea of having businesses or individuals bring their barbecue grills to Main Street and cook up some ribs and bring something different to the community. At the time, we were both on the Chamber of Commerce board of directors and were trying to do something that would bring a lot of people to our community for a fun day.
It turned out to be a great idea and it was a lot of fun. With nothing more than an idea, we rounded up some people who thought it sounded like fun and brought their backyard grills to Main Street and cooked up some ribs. It was nothing special. But to us and to the city’s Main Street merchants it was.

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