Preparations for Paducah’s 19th annual Barbeque on the River festival are already under way. The three-day festival will feature live music, games for kids and, of course, over 90,000 pounds of smoked meat from competing vendors. But plans are in the works to include a new contest category that would allow casual barbequers to compete. Festival Director David Boggs said the decision to include the “In Your Backyard Pig Cook-Off” was a logistical necessity.
“We’ve had so many folks that have wanted to participate in Barbeque On The River and just don’t have the time that it takes to put in to our festival," said Boggs. "So it’s just an opportunity for folks who want to get involved in some way but really don’t have the full week to commit to this and get involved in Barbeque On The River.”
Boggs said the guidelines for the 30 amateur participants will differ from those for professional vendors as all meat will be cooked off-site and not served to the public. Boggs said he hopes this competition will attract even greater turnout in years to come. Over 40,000 people attend the festival each year which runs September 26-28 in downtown Paducah.