PIERRE, S.D. – Yankton’s Rockin’ Ribfest, held in September, helped boost the local economy through increased attendance, more vendors and more food.
“Hosting events like Rockin’ Ribfest really does a lot for the local community,” said Richard Benda, secretary of the South Dakota Department of Tourism and State Development. “The festival draws in visitors from surrounding communities and in this case, surrounding states, which brings new dollars into the local economy.”
Rockin’ Ribfest is a one-day event marking the end of the summer for Yankton. It’s a classic rock, family oriented, rib lovers paradise. The event hosts bands throughout the day, free kids’ activities, multiple food vendors, and an amateur “ribbers” contest for prize money.
“This event has grown significantly in the last year, and the number of ribbers and attendees has grown to include the tri-state area,” said Holly Arends, Executive Director for Rockin’ Ribfest. “It’s a small festival that is able to provide a family atmosphere, like the last family barbeque of the summer.”
The festival has been a revenue producing event for the community and local business owners. The 2008 event grew attendance by 20% and increased vendors from three to seven. In addition, the event saw an increased number of “ribbers” competing for prize money.