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Roots 'N Blues - BelAirs [Photo]

Dave Pruitt of The Bel Airs performs on the community stage at Flat Branch Park during the Roots 'n Blues 'n BBQ Festival on Friday night.

Missouri High Steppers [Slideshow]

The third annual Roots 'N 'Blues 'N BBQ Festival opened on Friday with a parade and performance by the Mid-Missouri Highsteppers.

The Highsteppers, whose members range in age from 8 to their teens, are a drill squad led by drillmaster Tyrone Raybon.

"What we're trying to do is build self-esteem, pride, commitment, all those things," said assistant drillmaster Kirby Marks. "And we make sure we put in the structure of discipline and dedication, and then we try to implement that into the classroom as well. So these kids here, they're what we would call the select number that made it through the cut."

MU v Nevada - Danario Alexander [Photo]

Missouri's Danario Alexander scores a touchdown past the Nevada defense during Friday night's 31-21 win in Reno, Nevada.

Abandoned Bus [Photo]

An abandoned bus at University of Nevada-Reno brings more questions than answers.

High-Steppers Parade [Photo]

Rolando Barry leads the Mid-Missouri Highsteppers down Cherry Street in the New Belgium Brewing Co. bike parade on Friday evening.

Ready to pop [Photo]

Sammy Stidham of Columbia gets ready to pour a fresh batch of kettle corn into a drum at the Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival on Cherry Street on Friday.

Popping the corn [Photo]

Sammy Stidham pours a fresh batch of kettle corn from the popper into the cooling copper drum to be bagged in preparation for the Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival on Friday. Stidham pops the corn in hot oil and sugar and his wife Dee salts the popped corn and bags it to be sold.

Showing the way [Photo]

Josh Berneking, right, of Logic Systems Sounds and Lighting Inc., works with Heith Furtangler of MSA Productions/B&M Stage Productions to prepare the sound for the stage at Eighth and Locust on Friday. Berneking began as a disc jockey at 18 and progressed into live audio engineering. "I'm just really into music," he said.

Adjusting the sound [Photo]

Andrew Beer, with Logic Systems Sound & Lighting Inc., makes sound adjustments for the stage at the intersection of Eighth and Locust on Friday. This is the first year that Logic Systems, located in St. Louis, has taken part in the Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival.

Ready to roll [Photo]

Microphones wait as the crew of MSA Productions/B&M Stage Productions prepare the stage in Peace Park on Friday. The company, which is co-owned by Bob Reeves, has worked every Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival. This year it is providing all the sound and power for the event.

Blocking the event site [Photo]

A stage for the Roots 'N Blues BBQ Festival is complete on Locust Street on Friday. Roads began closing Friday morning in preparation for the festival that takes place Friday night from 5:15 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Preping the meat [Photo]

Allen James prepares chicken at his booth on the corner of Cherry Street and Fifth Street Friday. James is a member of team Smokin’ O’s and will compete in tomorrow’s Roots 'N Blues BBQ competition.

Testing the temperature [Photo]

Gary Walkup checks the temperature of his hamburgers on Friday on Fifth Street. Walkup is a member of the team Belly Brothers and will compete in the Roots 'N Blues BBQ competition.

Firing up the grill [Photo]

John Berkbuegler checks on his hamburgers Friday on Fifth Street. Berkbuegler is one member of Belly Brothers, a team that has been competing together for five years.

Meeting the competition [Photo]

Teams competing in the Roots 'N Blues BBQ competition set up their stations Friday in front of Flat Branch on Fifth Street in downtown Columbia. The teams will be serving BBQ Friday from 5:15 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Organizing the microphones [Photo]

Blue Note production manager Dylan McCord and Blue Note engineer Scott Mitchell sort through all the microphones that will be used for the Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival on Thursday at the Peace Park stage. The third annual festival will feature five stages and, for the first time, will require attendees to purchase tickets.

Checking the sound [Photo]

Blue Note production manager Dylan McCord reviews sound equipment with Blue Note engineer Scott Mitchell on Thursday while setting up the Peace Park stage for the upcoming Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival. Because the Peace Park stage is the only one in the festival where open containers will be allowed, the production team said they expect this stage to be the most crowded.

Setting the stage [Photo]

Bob Reeves, co-owner of MSA Productions, works to get electrical equipment under cover from the oncoming rain on Thursday at the Peace Park stage for the Roots 'N Blues 'N BBQ Festival. Reeves and his Columbia-based company, which set up all five stages for the festival this year, began putting all the stages together at 8 a.m. on Thursday.

Robert Steeples closes in for a tackle [Photo]

Robert Steeples (No. 22) fights off a blocker while chasing down Furman tailback Jerodis Williams with Missouri teammate Donovan Bonner (No. 21).

Carl Gettis get used to returning punts [Photo]

Finding anywhere to run is proving difficult for Missouri's new punt returner Carl Gettis.
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