Here’s more information about the world’s premier barbecue cooking contest! Remember that it IS a contest and not a food festival, meaning the barbecue being cooked here is only for the judges, the teams and their friends, NOT the general public.
But don’t despair! Check out these options below for ways you can enjoy championship-quality barbecue at the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest!
VIPit Pass presented by Big Green Egg
The VIPit Pass is the head honcho of World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest experiences. From cooking demonstrations to tours of competitor's team spaces, you'll be shown the things that everyone wishes they could see. While the final #WCBCC20 VIPit schedule isn't quite approved yet, we've listed a few things from the 2019 VIP experience below to help you get a taste. Check back at the beginning of the year for a 2020 schedule.
- Several rounds of meeting & interacting with competition teams
- Cooking demonstrations (& tastings too, of course)
- Meet and interact with teams participating in BBQ Alley
- Enjoying sauce wrestling, Ms. Piggie Idol and all featured entertainment at the Cattlemen's Main Stage
- Judging class with a certified Memphis in May judge
- Depart for Blind Judging in the Judges Tent
- AND MUCH MORE!
BBQ Alley by Big Green Egg & Friends
BBQ Alley by Big Green Egg & Friends is a consumer experience at #WCBCC! This special area features four well-known barbecue restaurants plus Big Green Egg serving up what everyone comes to the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest to experience - top-notch barbecue! Limited quantities of $20 tickets are sold online and in person. Check out more details below!
Tickets: Available here and at the BBQ Alley area, located near the middle of the park.
Free Demos: More information on this year's demos will be available at a later date.
Thursday, May 14
Session 1: 2-4 pm
Session 2: 4-6 pm
Friday, May 15
Session 3: 2-4 pm
Session 4: 4-6 pm
Saturday, May 16
Session 5: 11 am-1 pm
Session 6: 1-3 pm
Session 7: 3-5 pm
BBQ Alley will be located near the Memphis in May Merchandise Tent!
A variety of BBQ will be served including pork ribs, pulled pork, beef and poultry. In addition, small sides will be offered like baked beans and mac n’ cheese.
A maximum of 250 people per session will be served. If they sell out online, you'll still have the opportunity to buy them the day of the event. Please note that BBQ Alley is an add-on and a general admission ticket must still be purchased to gain access into the park.
Kingsford Tour of Champions
The general public has access to taste and judge barbecue from the teams competing by purchasing a ticket for the Kingsford Tour of Champions. This unique barbecue experience gives you the chance to judge and sample barbecue and listen to teams explain their craft. Each tour will last approximately an hour and a half and includes visits to three different barbecue teams.
Tickets: Available here for $20
Thursday, May 14
Tour 1: 2 pm
Tour 2: 3 pm
Tour 3: 4 pm
Friday, May 15
Tour 4: 2 pm
Tour 5: 3 pm
Tour 6: 4 pm
Capacity for each session is 100 people. Please note that the Kingsford Tour of Champions is an add-on and a general admission ticket must still be purchased to gain access into the park.
Want to learn to grill like a pit-master? Sign up for the Cooker Caravan, a guided tour of some of our best competition teams. You'll get to rub shoulders with the best in the 'cue. Your guided tour will include cooking info, a chance to see a variety of specialty grills and smokers, and tips on how to improve your own backyard barbecue style. Tours leave every thirty minutes during schedule tour times. Don't miss this chance to get a behind-the-grill view of the most prestigious barbecue cooking competition in the world!
Space is limited and you'll need to sign up at the Cooker Caravan table, located in the middle of the park near the Judges Tent.
#WCBCC Schedule & Times: These will be available at a later date.
#WCBCC20 Additional Details
The World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest will take place rain or shine. If severe weather should arise, refer to the WCBCC Facebook page for immediate information.
- Children ages six and younger will receive free admission. Tickets are good for the dates specified only.
- A photo I.D. is required for will-call.
- No refunds, rain checks or exchanges. Tickets are good for the dates specified only.
- Admission to Tom Lee Park is first-come, first-served.
TRAVEL AND LODGING
Finding your way to Memphis and your way around the festival grounds is easy. World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest takes place in downtown Memphis, Tennessee in Tom Lee Park a 33-acre park on the banks of the Mississippi River located on Riverside Drive between Beale Street and Georgia Avenue.
For lodging accommodations, directions to Memphis, parking and other transportation options, please visit the travel page.
For information about what to eat, where to stay and what to visit while staying in the Home of the Blues, Soul & Rock n' Roll, check out MemphisTravel.com.
Inquires for patrons with Disabilities? See Accessibility Information.
FOR YOUR SAFETY
- If Tom Lee Park reaches capacity, for the sake of crowd safety and enjoyment, Memphis in May International Festival, Inc. reserves the right to refuse admission unless a patron has a ticket purchased in advance.
- All packages and bags are subject to inspection.
- Photo I.D.'s are required for all alcohol purchases.
- Memphis in May International Festival, Inc. and its employees, officers and sponsors assume no liability for injury sustained by ticket holders at this event.
- Memphis in May International Festival, Inc. reserves the right to refuse admission or to eject any person violating rules; local, state and federal laws; or whose conduct is deemed illegal, disorderly, dangerous or offensive.
FOOD AND DRINK
All food must be purchased with cash. ATMs are available at Tom Lee Park for your convenience. A photo I.D. is required for all alcohol purchases.
Here's a look at the #WCBCC19 map as a reference point. We'll update this for #WCBCC20 as soon as it's finalized!
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