The annual series of competitive barbecue cooking is now in full swing in Eastern North Carolina with three contests set for the coming weekend, including large gatherings in Greenville and Raleigh expected to draw thousands of pork barbecue lovers.
But the little town of Fair Bluff in Columbus County also gets into the act with its 2nd Annual BBQ on the Bluff event on April 19 and 20, where 12 teams will put the heat to the pigs on Friday night around 8 p.m. Judging the succulent results will be between 8 and 9 a.m. on Saturday and barbecue will be served to the public around noon.
The 3rd Annual Wolfpack Club BBQ Bowl in Raleigh on April 19 and 20 is one of several events leading up to N.C. State University’s Red/White spring football game. Approximately 25 cooking teams will begin cooking their hogs on Friday evening around 8 p.m. in Carter-Finley Stadium’s Motorhome Lot.
On Saturday morning, April 20, the judging will begin in the Motorhome Lot around 8 a.m. and the finished barbecue will be served to the public at 11 a.m. The football game kicks off at 1:30 p.m., culminating in festivities including a cornhole tournament and bounce houses for the youngsters.
The coming weekend also features the 30th Annual Pigskin Pig-Out Contest in Greenville, one of the venerable hog cooking competitions held in the Old North State. Part of a 4-day series of events leading to East Carolina University’s spring football game, the Pig Cookin’ Contest will get underway on April 19 and include around 40 of the state’s premier cooking teams.
The competitors will begin their culinary efforts around 5:30 p.m. near Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium on April 19 and will conclude with judging at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning, April 20. The chopped meat will be made available in time for tailgating before the Purple & Gold game at 2:30 p.m.
Using judges certified by the N.C. Pork Council, the three upcoming contests continue the season of qualification for the state’s championship cook-off which this year will be held in conjunction with the annual festival presented by the International Bluegrass Music Association blue(IBMA) in Raleigh.
The IBMA will host the Wide Open Bluegrass festival in the capital city on September 27 and 28, turning Raleigh’s downtown event campus (Raleigh Convention Center, Red Hat Amphitheater and Duke Energy Center for Performing Arts) into the global centerpiece of bluegrass music.