Press Releases

For immediate release 

September 2013


Backyard Bistro Hosting Miracle League Carnival Sept.30

Restaurant teams with Pepsi in fund-raising efforts for baseball league  


(RALEIGH, NC) – Backyard Bistro and Pepsi Bottling Ventures will co-host a carnival at the Raleigh restaurant on Thursday, Sept. 30 to help launch “Midweek Miracles,” a fund-raising campaign to help celebrate the 5th season of the Miracle League of the Triangle.

The carnival will take place from 4-8 p.m. in the parking lot of Backyard Bistro, featuring games and a cookout, including a dunking booth, face-painting and prizes. Proceeds from the event will go directly to the Miracle League of the Triangle, an organization that helps children with special needs play baseball.

The carnival and the launching of Midweek Miracles, which will take place every Wednesday night at Backyard Bistro, are part of a fund-raising campaign and Pepsi grant to help fund field repairs, equipment and other needs for the children who play in the Miracle League of the Triangle.

The league has grown from humble beginnings to more than 250 players and 500 volunteers, playing its games on Saturdays at Adams Elementary School in Cary.   

“We at Pepsi Bottling Ventures are proud to support the Miracle League of the Triangle, and the $5,000 Pepsi Refresh Grant that was awarded to us will make an immediate impact for the players, volunteers and families of the Miracle League Field,” said Pepsi spokeswoman Stephanie Shear. “Thank you Backyard Bistro for your efforts to help support this wonderful organization by raising awareness and funds for the Miracle League Field.”

          “The Miracle League of the Triangle would like to thank Pepsi and Backyard Bistro for their continued support of the league,” added Robin Rose and Tony Withers, co-founders of the league. “Without wonderful individuals and the good people behind these and many other companies, special needs children would still have playing baseball as a dream and not as a reality. Please come and share their dream this upcoming year.”

          In addition to the carnival, Backyard Bistro will host Midweek Miracles every Wednesday from 5-8 p.m. at the restaurant across from the RBC Center. Backyard Bistro will contribute 10 percent all food sales during that three-hour period to the league. In addition, the restaurant will be airing the previous weekend’s games on the big screens through the fall season. And all kids who eat during that time will receive a coupon for a kids’ meal for $1 to use on their next visit.

“Having a son who plays baseball I can only imagine the joy the kids of the Miracle League of the Triangle get from playing such a great game,” said Backyard Bistro co-owner Joe Lumbrazo. “We were thrilled when Pepsi approached us to help fund the league. It is truly a special cause.” 

          For additional information, please log on to www.backyardbistro.com, www.miracleleagueofthetriangle.com or www.refresheverything.com.


For immediate release 

Summer 2013

Backyard Bistro’s “Big Rig” Highlighted This Summer on Epic BBQ Pits Show    

RALEIGH, N.C. – In less than five years Raleigh-based Backyard Bistro has earned quite a reputation in the Triangle for its BBQ grilling and tailgating expertise, complementing its expansive catering business and popular family, sports-themed restaurant across from PNC Arena and Carter-Finley Stadium.

            This summer, the rest of the nation can now get an inside glimpse of how Backyard Bistro’s grilling operation was founded and the history behind the 38-foot “Big Rig” as one of four businesses across the country featured on an episode of Epic BBQ Pits on the Destination America Cable Network.

            “The first reaction when people see the Big Rig is ‘wow,”’ said Backyard Bistro co-owner Lance Wheeler. “Very few people have ever seen anything like it.”

“Our goal of the show was to feature over-the-top BBQs and we searched for the best and Backyard Bistro’s name kept popping up,” said Janice McDonald, the show’s field producer.

The Big Rig, equivalent to an outdoor kitchen on wheels, turns heads as it makes it way down the road or pulls into an on-site grilling location in the Triangle, state of North Carolina or across the Southeast.

The self-sufficient Big Rig displays four 3-by-5 feet grills (large enough to cook a whole 125-pound pig each), two cast-iron burners, two 35-pound fryers, a homemade hush puppy maker, six 40-pound LP gas tanks, four sinks and more than a half dozen large stainless steel storage boxes.

“The Big Rig was a collaboration between Wheeler and Melvin Whitman, the owner of BQ Grills in Elm City, N.C.

“As our groups kept getting larger and larger I figured I would put something together to play with,” Wheeler said. “Melvin and I now talk once every six months about new designs and ways to increase volume.”

“It’s one of the biggest, badest cookers out there,” added Whitman, who designed Backyard Bistro’s five other grills.

The Big Rig has fed as many as 8,000 hungry souls over a 2 ½-hour span with 16 buffet lines going at once.

            “We believe our equipment, on-site grilling expertise, food quality and professional staff provide our customers with a truly exceptional BBQ experience,” said Joe Lumbrazo, Wheeler’s Backyard Bistro partner.  

            Backyard Bistro was also featured in August 2011 on an episode of TLC’s “Outrageous Kids Parties,” catering a 500-person guest list for the country carnival-themed birthday party and catered the 75th anniversary celebration for Ducks Unlimited aboard the USS North Carolina battleship last summer.   

Backyard Bistro has been highlighted in Cary Living magazine for three straight years as the premier tailgating specialist in the Triangle.

About Backyard Bistro:

Backyard Bistro is located off Trinity Road, within walking distance of PNC Arena and Carter-Finley Stadium. The family-owned restaurant opened in April 2009 and offers Sunday brunch, lunch and dinner menus, a full-service bar, private banquet room, along with custom on-site catering, tailgating services and concessions across the Triangle, state of North Carolina and the  Southeast.   

About Destination America:

Formally Planet Green, Destination America is the first network to celebrate the people, places, and stories of the United States, emblazoned with the grit and tenacity, honesty and work ethic, humor and adventurousness that characterize our nation. Targeting adults 25-54, the network is available in 59.5 million homes and features original series covering such subjects as American food, mysteries, heroes and iconic landmarks.