Big BBQ Bash attracts savory skill to Maryville

(MARYVILLE, Tenn.) The 2018 Big BBQ Bash is set for June 22 and 23 at Founder’s Square in historic downtown Maryville, TN, located at the picturesque foothills of the Smoky Mountains. The professional barbecue cook-off is a fundraiser for the Helen Ross McNabb Center, established as a legacy project by the Leadership Blount Class of 2007.

This is the Big BBQ Bash’s fifth year as a Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) sanctioned competition. KCBS sanctions barbecue and grilling contests across the U.S. and advocates barbecue as America's cuisine. Additionally, KCBS has a vast Certified Barbecue Judging program. KCBS is the largest association of barbecue lovers in the world.

The Big BBQ Bash will draw more than 30 teams from across the country to compete. Categories include pulled pork, ribs, brisket, chicken, dessert and a special Wampler’s Farm Sausage category. Cash and prizes totaling $10,000, a trophy and, of course, bragging rights for the top three teams in each category will be awarded. The 2017 grand champion team, The Pit Crew, took home last year's grand prize.

Governor Bill Haslam has proclaimed the Blount County Big BBQ Bash as a state championship, making the competition a qualifier for the American Royal Barbecue Cook-Off and Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue. Teams can choose to sell their award-winning barbecue or save it all for the competition. If teams elect to sell, barbecue will be available for purchase on Friday evening and midday Saturday. The Big BBQ Bash is a part of Summer on Broadway, a two day festival with food and activities for the whole family. Admission is free to the public on Friday and Saturday. For more information about Summer on Broadway visit www.summeronbroadway.net.

To register a barbecue team or for sponsorship information, please visit the official event website, www.blountbbqbash.com. For more information, contact Amanda McPhetridge at (865) 254-6334 or amanda.mcphetridge@mcnabb.org.

Since its inception in 2007, the Big BBQ Bash has raised more than $150,000. All proceeds from the 2018 Big BBQ Bash will benefit mental health, addiction and social services provided by the Helen Ross McNabb Center.

The Helen Ross McNabb Center is a premier not‐for‐profit provider of behavioral health services in East Tennessee. Since 1948, the Center has provided quality and compassionate care to children, adults and families experiencing mental illness, addiction and social challenges. As the Center celebrates 70 years of providing services to communities in East Tennessee, its mission remains clear and simple; “Improving the lives of the people we serve.” For more information, visit www.mcnabbcenter.org or call 865‐637‐9711.

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