Competition heats up at 2nd day of Naperville Ribfest

NAPERVILLE, Ill. (WLS) -- Ribfest is kicking off its second day of barbecue and live music on Thursday. Headliners on Thursday include KC and the Sunshine Band, Flo Rida and a fireworks display, with Brantley Gilbert on Friday and Bad Company on Saturday.

WATCH: Tips for cooking the perfect ribs at home
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Jim Clayton, owner of Texas Outlaws' Ribs, shares his tips for making barbecue at home.

Competition heated up Thursday as rib vendors from around the country vie for honors in three categories: Best Ribs, Best Sauce and Kid's Choice.

"We're going to shoot to make sure we win the competition this year," said Dan Johnson, of Johnson's BBQ. "We've won several times before and hopefully we'll get it this year from all over the country."

"I love to compete. There's always a good bunch of competitors out here - and I love beating them!" said Jim Clayton, owner of Texas Outlaw BBQ.

And whether you like your ribs sweet or spicy, it's a bittersweet year for the festival. After three decades, Ribfest will be moving to Romeoville next year.

"It is sad to be moving on although we look forward to next year and keeping things going," said Ron Amato, president-elect of the Exchange Club of Naperville.

Over the past 31 years, the festival has raised $17.5 million for charities for children of child abuse and domestic violence.

Gates open at noon daily at Knoch Park. Admission is $5 and concert tickets start at $30. For more information, visit

ABC7 is a proud sponsor of Naperville Ribfest.
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