Barbecue championship a success in first year

Jake Old • May 22, 2017 at 3:44 PM

The inaugural Southern Smoke Barbecue Championship, held Saturday by the Rotary Clubs in Wilson County at the Expo Center, was a success, according to Kevin Etheridge, president of the Mt. Juliet Breakfast Rotary Club.

“Wow, what a great weekend,” Etheridge said in his weekly address to members of the Mt. Juliet Rotary Club.

The Mt. Juliet Breakfast Rotary Club took the lead on the project, which served as a fundraiser for the Rotary clubs in the county. Volunteers from each club participated in the event.

“I believe it will be an event that could become a longtime standard here in Wilson County,” Etheridge said.

The event saw 19 top-level barbecue teams compete for $12,000 in cash prizes, as well as the distinction of winning the inaugural Wilson County competition. The Kansas City Barbecue Society officially sanctioned the event.

Wilson County residents were welcome to visit the event, which had no admission fee, and take part in the many festivities on-hand, in addition to the central competition. Among the activities were a zip line, rock climbing wall, bounce houses and vendors onsite.

Winners in the barbecue championship were named in several categories, as well as an overall grand champion, awarded to the team Sweet Smoke Barbecue, and a reserve champion, awarded to the team High on the Hawg. Among the categories in which awards were presented were best chicken, pork ribs, pork and brisket.

On Friday, the evening before the event, a special five-star dinner dance event was held at the Expo Center, featuring the Exotics and celebrity chef John Coon.

“The Friday evening event was spectacular,” Etheridge said. “I enjoyed hearing from pit master John Coon as he served us barbecue from the whole hog.” 

The Southern Smoke Barbecue Championship was held in conjunction with the 39th annual F-100 Supernationals, which is the largest all-Ford product show in the country.

For more information, visit southernsmokebbqtn.com. 

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