Writer: Yerelyn Cortez Hidalgo

May 23, 2023

ilani BBQ Fest 2023 is taking place on Thursday, June 8th thru Sunday, June 11th, 2023 at ilani Resort located on the Cowlitz Reservation in Ridgefield, Washington, ilani, developed by the Cowlitz Tribe and Salishan-Mohegan, a partnership that includes Mohegan Sun, one of the world’s foremost gaming and entertainment developers and operators, is the Pacific Northwest’s premier gaming, dining, entertainment, and meeting destination. With nearly 400,000 total square feet, ilani includes more than 100,000 square feet of gaming space with nearly 3,000 slots and 75 gaming tables; 18 different restaurants, bars, and retail outlets; and a 2,500-seat meeting and entertainment venue hosting nationally recognized performances.

Sample and savor the best barbecue favorites as some of the nation’s top pitmasters show off their chops in one epic, sauce-filled weekend. Plus, great drink specials, live entertainment and so much more. The headlining chefs for the event include Chef Kevin Bludso, Chef Rocco DiSpirito, Chef Christina Fitzgerald, Chef Aaron May, Chef Damaris Phillips, Chef Rasheed Philips, Chef Michael Symon and Chef Jet Tila. The celebrity emcees are Deanna Col​on and D'Andra Simmons. The supporting chefs include Misty Banchero, Rick Browne, Mary Cressler & Sean Martin, Stan Hays, Fred Hopson, Phil "The Grill" Johnson, Bruce Kalman, Lynnae Oxley, John Railey and Erica Blaire Roby.

Check out the rotating schedule of events below along with photos of the chefs and supporting chefs.


Check out the video/reel below from last year's event.

For more information, please visitilani BBQ Fest 2023 or click here.

Photo Credit: ilani BBQ Fest


ilani BBQ Fest 2023
Ilani Resort in Cowlitz Reservation in Ridgefield, Washington 

Thursday, June 8th - Sunday, June 11th, 2023