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Spice Boys kick grilling up a notch

New barbecue supply store opens in Detroit Lakes

Chris Okeson and Jim Wood (not pictured) recently opened Spice Boys, a barbecue supply store on south Washington Avenue in Detroit Lakes.
Barbie Porter / Detroit Lakes Tribune
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DETROIT LAKES — Grill masters, rejoice: The Spice Boys are kicking flavor up a notch for grilled-food lovers in Detroit Lakes.

The new barbecue supply house, located at 1148 Washington Avenue, offers dry rubs, sauces for steaks, brats and wings, marinades, and seasonings. The store also has a variety of grills and grilling supplies.

Store owners Chris Okeson and Jim Wood first discussed the store concept about a year ago. However, both men had their hands full with their full-time jobs. Okeson is a regional salesman for ISCO Industries, and Wood owns Dow Acoustics.

Spices, dry rubs, sauces and marinades for the barbecue can be found at Spice Boys, a new barbecue supply store in Detroit Lakes.
Barbie Porter / Detroit Lakes Tribune

“There is a similar (barbecue supply) store in the Brainerd area that I would go to when I visited my sister,” Okeson said. “Jim (Wood) happened to be up there working, so I asked him to stop over there and get some seasonings.”

Upon Wood’s return, the store idea began to sizzle. Wood happened to own an empty building on a main thoroughfare that was formerly a salon. The 1989 Detroit Lakes High School graduates decided there was no time like the present and began renovating the building when they had time on weekends and weekday evenings.


The Spice Boys barbecue supply store is located at 1152 Washington Avenue, Detroit Lakes.
Barbie Porter / Detroit Lakes Tribune
Flavored wood pellets are one of the many grilling accessories sold at Spice Boys in Detroit Lakes.
Barbie Porter / Detroit Lakes Tribune

“We gutted it and just went with it,” he said, adding the only true plan was to have a porch and two functional see-through garage doors. “Eventually, we plan to grill on the deck where people can come and try different seasonings on different meats.”

He added the different grill options at the store will also be featured during the cook-outs. The options include charcoal, wood pellets and a griddle.

“We also have a smokeless fire pit that you can cook on,” Okeson said. He pointed to a silver ring that can be set on the fire pit with an opening in the center. “You can cook chicken, burgers or whatever on that. It also has a grill rack option. That (rack) is something you can easily take camping with you, too.”

The variety of spices are also easily transported, and more are soon to be added to the shelves. Several items already offered are made in the region, and one belongs to Okeson. The pure maple syrup is different than the rest of the items on the shelves, but customers have already snatched up several bottles of the sweet treat.

Spice Boys has wood pellet, charcoal and griddles for sale.
Barbie Porter / Detroit Lakes Tribune

The Detroit Lakes residents were pleasantly surprised with the number of people stopping by the store out of curiosity.

“I did not expect this response so soon,” Okeson said, adding he is thankful to see the lakes area is eager to kick their taste buds up a notch and get recommendations for new spices to carry.

The business is in the process of building a website, where products can be ordered and delivered. Until the website is ready, the Spice Boys have a Facebook page or can be reached at (218) 844-4420.

The store is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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