The parking lot surrounding the offices of the Merced County Association of Realtors (MCAR) at 3190 M Street was transformed last Friday, July 30, into a mecca for grilled BBQ ribs with multiple community teams vying for a year’s worth of bragging rights.
Officially, the event was the annual BBQ Rib Cook-Off sponsored by MCAR’s Young Professional Network. Proceeds raised from the pre-order and drive-thru lunch sales will benefit the Housing Affordability Fund which was established to assist Merced County home buyers with down-payment assistance. MCAR’s Charitable Foundation manages the fund.
“We don’t have the final tally yet, but we believe that we raised nearly $15,000 to apply towards the program,” said Robert Dylina, one of the MCAR organizers of the event.
About 15 teams were signed up for the cook-off competition judged by Merced City Manager Stephanie Dietz, Bella Luna Bistro owners Giancarlo & Anaid DiTullio of Bella Luna Bistro, Atwater Mayor Paul Creighton, and Coach Seneca Ybarra.
First Place went to the perennial favorite Gonella Realty Commercial Division, affectionately known as the “We Love Big Racks” team.
Associates Lock and Safe took Second Place and Cardinal Financial came in Third Place.