This year, per restrictions on mass gatherings during Phase 3 of COVID recovery in North Carolina, the annual Currituck Bulls & BBQ event must undergo some changes. The 2020 rodeo, craft market, and People’s Choice tasting are unfortunately cancelled. It is our hope to resume these events for the 2021 festival.
However, the 2020 Kansas City Barbecue Society competition is still on the schedule, and Elizabeth City’s own Out ‘n the Cold will perform. While these events are not open to the public, you can enjoy both via livestream on November 7 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Visit the Bulls & BBQ page to watch the livestream on November 7.
The Best in Barbecue
Those who have attended this event in the past (formerly the Currituck Heritage Festival) can tell you that the BBQ competition is serious business. Ours is one of 500 sanctioned by the KCBS, a worldwide organization dedicated to promoting all things barbecue, from recipes to the proper way to cook.
The pitmasters and teams who come to the Currituck County Rural Center to compete have spent years perfecting their methods in grilling meats judged in four categories: chicken, pork ribs, pork, and brisket. Trophies and cash prizes are awarded to the top five winners in each category.
Not just anybody can decide the winner. One must take a judging class and remain in good standing with the KCBS to be a Certified Barbecue Judge. The Kansas City Barbecue Society’s official website has more information.
Who Will Be the Grand Champion?
In 2019, Hamtown Smokers of Smithfield, Virginia took home the Grand Champion title, and Redneck Scientific of Benson, North Carolina was named Reserve Grand Champion. With last year’s Grand Champion not yet scheduled to appear, the big trophy could go to a new team of barbecue enthusiasts.
This year, 34 teams have applied to compete. Thirteen hail from North Carolina, while the rest are coming from as far as Alabama and New Jersey for a chance at prize money, which totals $11,500 over the six categories. Returning for another shot at Grand Champion are Redneck Scientific and last year’s category winners Wolf’s Revenge BBQ of Virginia (chicken and brisket), Fred Vegas Smokers of Virginia (Pork ribs), and Good Googly Goo BBQ of Maryland (Pork). Be sure to watch live on November 7 to see who will reign in Currituck.
We also give special thanks to our sponsors, who have continued to support this year’s event in the wake of these changes:
Gold Partner: Brindley Beach Vacations & Sales
Silver Partner: Ciniva Creative & Digital Marketing Agency
Band Partner: MediaOne
Cowboy Nod Partner: Kilmarlic Golf Club
People’s Choice Partner: TowneBank of Currituck
Please note participating teams are subject to change. For more information, please contact Kemberly Sawyer at [email protected]