Side Dishes: Texas Roadhouse hosts eating competition
It may be part of a 310-strong national chain, but the Williston Texas Roadhouse  wants to give back to Vermont. Waterville-based owner John Strout makes sure his rib-and-steak joint purchases most of its products from Black River Produce  and regularly raises money for local charities. The latest scheme to get diners to give is the First Annual Rib Eating Contest, to be held on Saturday, June 19.
Marketing director Katie Nickitas says her brainstorm was born of a wish to help the DREAM Program , a youth-mentoring group based in Winooski. The contest entry fee is $200 per eater, with all the proceeds going directly to DREAM.
Competitors will have their way with their ribs for a set amount of time, and the winner will be the one with the most clean bones on his or her plate. That champion will receive a grill from Lowe’s. Other prizes include a $400 gift certificate from Wendell’s Furniture  and free pies from Rocky’s N.Y. Pizza .