12:30 PM ApprenticEShip Competition


2:00 pm world championship qualifier


Regional Series Rep: Rick Ranieri: (708) 476-3486, Matt Pfotenhauer (630) 707-8200

Frankfort – The 2019 SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® Illinois Regional Series will be hosted once again by Tri-State Cut Stone and Brick in Frankfort, IL. This event is one of 24 national qualifying contests to be held across North America. The winning competitors are battling for a trip to Las Vegas to compete at the World Championship at the World of Concrete and for a chance at over $125,000 in cash and prizes, including a Ford F250 XLT 4X4 truck and John Deere Gator.

In addition to hosting the World Championship qualifier, Illinois is one the select sites across North America to host a SPEC MIX Jr. BRICKLAYER competition. This new and exciting event tests masonry apprentices and high school students in an abbreviated version of the main regional competition.

Last year’s regional drew 11 teams of highly skilled bricklayers. Marty Marrs and Tony Savant celebrated with a brick count of 587. For their efforts, Marrs and Savant receive A Marshalltown tool bag, Stabila Level, $500, a trip to Las Vegas and the title “Illinois’ Best Bricklayer.” But they didn’t stop there; Marrs and Savant also took home the title SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN, which came with additional $500 reward.

2nd place went to mason Mike Boll and his mason tender Sam Van-Buren of J&E Duff in West Chicago, IL with a brick count of 496 earning them a prize of $400. Third place went to mason Tracy Wollenburg and his mason tender Francisco Gonzales of Mike Cachey Construction, Chicago, IL who received $300. Each subsequent competitor received a cash reward for participating and also took home a Stabila level and masonry tools.

Masonry students from the District Council Training Center were in attendance to help the SPEC MIX team run the event, and to gain valuable experience in working with some of the regions’ most skilled laborers. Two students were chosen to build their own wall to compare their skills against the pros. The student competitors took 10th and 11th place, and received a cash prize of $100 each.


For the first time in the history of the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500, high school and post-secondary students will be allowed to compete in their own competition designed specifically for their skill level. Those chosen to compete in the Jr. Competition will be given 20 minutes to build an abbreviated version of the wall being constructed during the day’s journeymen bricklaying battle. Students from local trade schools will have a chance to compete in Illinois this year.

The Jr. Bricklaying event is part of a greater workforce development initiative, Masonry Education Day, which allows students a chance to meet local contractors and vendors to learn more about jobs and products in their area. Along with the student competitors, additional masonry students  will be in attendance to cheer on their peers while participating in the education program.

The SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® was established by SPEC MIX in 2003 to showcase the skill and craftsmanship of professional masons. It is featured as the headliner event of MASONRY MADNESS™ Day during the World of Concrete and recognized as the masonry industry’s premier bricklaying competition with a total purse estimated at $125,000 that annually awards the title, “World’s Best Bricklayer”. Each year there are a series of preliminary SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 Regional Qualifying Events held throughout North America to determine who will compete in the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500 World Championship. The Championship finale draws as many as 4,000 spectators with thousands of live webcast viewers who tune in to watch this bricklayer battle.

NOTE USE OF TERMS: Please respect all legal trademarks for trade use. In print, the correct way to refer to the competition event is the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500® World Championship, and MASONRY MADNESS® or MASONRY MADNESS® Day, case use as shown. The award titles for SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN, and SPEC MIX TOUGHEST TENDER®, should be in all caps followed by the word, “award.” When writing about our corporation the correct way to write our corporate name is SPEC MIX®. If referring to SPEC MIX brand the correct way is SPEC MIX®. The ® mark should always be used on the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500®, and SPEC MIX® the first time either term is used in body copy and always used when either term is in a headline or sub-headline. The same is correct for MASONRY MADNESS® or MASONRY MADNESS® Day.

If any of these title terms are used for mass media news or editorial use, we ask that the full term be used at least once at the beginning of the article, thereafter, “event or competition” would be acceptable terms. Please do not cut, rename or edit the legal trademarked name of the event so as to maintain the legal brand name and its integrity.