Now most of us don’t need a certificate to feel comfortable judging barbecue.

From the smoke to the sauce, we’ve all got our own ideas on what makes it good.

But if you want to take your amateur judging to the next level, the S.C. Barbeque Association holds judge certification seminars throughout the year.

Once you become a certified barbecue judge, not only will you make your friends quake in their aprons when they invite you to their next backyard cookout, but you’ll earn the opportunity to judge real-live barbecue contests throughout the state.

The next certification class takes place in Columbia on July 17. E-mail S.C. Barbeque Association President Lake High for more information (Lhigh1@sc.rr.com). The all-day seminar costs $35 and includes a barbecue lunch. Sounds like a good deal to us.