A few years ago I picked up the rewarding hobby of smoking meats. I joined a variety of Facebook pages dedicated to the process and have enjoyed learning various tips, recipes, and techniques along the way.

One of the groups that I follow shared a lengthy list of "Rules to Follow" if you're invited to a cookout. Some rules are common decency regarding how to behave as a guest at anyone's house. Some other "rules" on the list are a touch on the controlling side and not very Montana-like. Let's take a look.


1. Do not show up if you were not invited by the host.

Disagree. If I'm hosting a BBQ, come on over! The more the merrier.

2. If you are invited, do not bring extra people.

Disagree. If you want to bring your friend, your grandma, or your brother-in-law from out of town, I don't care.

3. Always ask, "What can I bring?"

Agreed. I'll let you know if we don't need anything extra. Not sure what to bring (if I don't mention a side dish)? Grab a bag of chips or a bag of ice. Or booze.

Credit Michael Foth, TSM
Credit Michael Foth, TSM

4. If you bring a dish, plan on leaving it.

Disagree. If you want to take your leftovers home, please do. I don't really want to wash your casserole dish and coordinate its return anyway.

5. Everyone has rules at their house, be respectful or don't come.

I'll agree with this one.

6.  If your children are not well-behaved, you must stay at home with your children.

Disagree. Nobody loves naughty kids, but I'm not going to tell any of our friends they can't bring their rugrats to my house for an outdoor party.


7. If you smoke, be considerate.

Nicotine is a hell of a drug and I don't judge anyone who smokes, vapes, chews,  whatever. Just be polite about it and step away from the crowd.

8. Watch your child.

Agree with this one. If you brought your bratty kid to my party, that's fine... but I'm not your babysitter. Please keep an eye on them yourself.

9. Overloading your plate (knowing you're not going to eat it all).

Agree. I'd much rather you come back for a second or third helping than watch you toss a giant, half-eaten plate of food in the trash.

Credit Michael Foth, TSM
Credit Michael Foth, TSM

10. Finish your drink before opening a new one.

Agree. This goes for bottles of water or cans of beer. I can't tell you how many half-full drinks we always toss after a party. Kids are notorious for opening a soda, taking two sips, and running off to play, but adults do it too with beer.

11. If you haven't chipped in financially, you don't get leftovers.

I disagree with this rule. I'll usually keep enough leftovers for my family to enjoy the next day. Otherwise, I'll send you home with all the leftover ribs, baked beans, and pasta salad you want.

Do you have any rules at your BBQ parties? Let us know in the Comments on social media, or send us a Chat on our mobile app.

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