(Maumee, OH) The 34th annual Northwest Ohio Rib-off gets underway today.
A dozen barbecue joints will set up for the four-day run of the Rib-Off, but the music is usually the big draw for hundreds of people each year at the Lucas County fairgrounds.
Former Styx frontman Dennis DeYoung kicks off the weekend of concerts tonight, with gates opening at 4 p.m. But the opening act will be missing, replaced by a country duo from Nashville.
Organizers banned Rodney Parker and Liberty Beach from the event after the lead singer issued a Facebook post that was deemed as offensive and bordered on racism. Parker has defended the post as part of a discussion on free speech, not white nationalism.
Country crooner Lee Brice will entertain the masses Friday evening. Grand Funk Railroad makes a return rib-off appearance on Saturday night. Gates open at noon Friday and Saturday, with free admission until 2 p.m.
The African American festival takes over the fairgrounds Sunday with Zapp as the featured entertainment.