Louisiana burn ban had some searching for alternatives to outdoor cooking

And then there are those who were willing to take the risk this Labor Day
Published: Sep. 4, 2023 at 3:48 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — Outdoor cooking is not a violation of Louisiana’s burn ban; but if the flame you start ignites a fire that a fire department must respond to, you will be cited for that fire and even could face jail time, the state fire marshal’s office says.

This warning stands despite rains overnight and on Labor Day.

And it had some people looking for alternatives to grilling their holiday meals.

“We’re about to play, basically, an adult field day. We’re about to set up and do games out here in the field,” one person said.

There’s always ribs and chicken in the oven and hot dogs and hamburgers on a stovetop grill.

Or dining out.

“So we didn’t grill today because we actually thought there was a burn ban and we couldn’t actually use our pits and stuff to grill. So we were actually going to go out and buy pizzas and chicken and stuff out here.”

One ArkLaTex business said they saw a 20% increase in sales compared to Labor Day 2022.

“We have seen a large influx of food, in general, not just from sides, but also the meats,” said Chris Chadwick, owner of Podnuh’s Barbecue. “We’ve seen about a 20% increase this year compared to last year. The burn ban affected a little bit of that.”

And then there’s reaching out to a caterer.

There were those who were willing to take the risk — and precautions — and slap those bone-in rib-eyes on the outdoor grill anyway.

“Mine’s on a 30-by-40 patio. It comes off the back of my shop, and it’s up against my wall. So I’m not worried about a fire,” one said. “Plus, the pit I use is a Big Green Egg, and the ceramic is also contained.”

[RELATED: Grill or no grill? Louisiana Fire Marshal warns of outdoor cooking during Labor Day]

Many have been spending Labor Day weekend grilling and spending time with friends and family.