Day 1 of World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest starts off with a bang

Published: May. 17, 2023 at 10:53 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Bar-B-Q is back on the riverfront!

The annual Memphis in May World Championship BBQ Cooking Contest returned to Downtown Memphis on Wednesday.

Dozens of teams from around the world are in Memphis to compete against the best of the best BBQ has to offer.

“It’s a fantastic environment,” said Blues Hog pitmaster Tim Scheer. “The atmosphere is awesome. We’ve got a whole crew here. Blues Hog ready to roll again.”

2022 World Champions “Blues Hog” and pitmaster Tim Scheer are looking to get another ring for their whole hog with their massive smoker.

Entertainment for day one featured wrestlers slipping and sliding in barbecue sauce.

The first day of the World Championship BBQ Cooking Contest is also a day of preparation for most teams, like “Hall Pass BBQ.”

They’re competing for their twentieth year.

Tom Cassidy with Hall Pass is hoping they take the top prize for the rib competition this year.

“You know what they say, ‘If you lookin’, you ain’t cookin’,’” said Cassidy. “But imma show you. Look at those bad boys, baby back ribs prairie fresh, trimmed and ready!”

2022 Shoulder champs and past Overall champs, “Sweet Swine O’ Mine,” let Action News 5 in on their secret to secure the win.

“One of the secrets to this show to winning this is be memorable,” said Mark Lambert. “The judges don’t write their scores down until they judge all three teams and compare them, so be memorable.”

2023 looks to be a memorable year for the annual competition, back at its home at Tom Lee Park.

Gates open at 11 a.m. Thursday morning with grilling demos, the Miss Piggy Idol contest at 6 p.m. followed by live music from Al Kapone and The Sugarhill Gang!

Single-day tickets are available here for $15.

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