Festival records $170K loss resulting from smaller-scale events and postponement of BSMF in 2021 due to COVID19
WCBCC21 Safety Items
Expect the following changes in 2021:
- Social distancing: All patrons and participants will be required to maintain a 6’ distance while in the park and within team spaces.
- Mask requirements: All patrons and participants entering the park and in team spaces will be required to wear masks, except when eating or drinking.
- Capacity limitations will be in place in Tom Lee Park, in team spaces and the Judges Tent limiting daily attendance. It may be necessary to schedule team guest visitors on a timed basis, by using color coded wristbands with designated time periods.
- Sanitizing stations will be set up around the park to encourage cleanliness for our patrons and participants
- Team space capacity will be posted and monitored by COVID compliance officers to ensure participant and patron social distancing and capacity limits are adhered to by teams.
General WCBCC Information
WHERE IS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BARBECUE COOKING COMPETITION?
World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest is held at Tom Lee Park, a 30-acre sprawling park on the banks of the Mississippi river in Downtown Memphis, Tennessee. Tom Lee Park is approachable by car from I-55 and I-240.
I CAN PURCHASE BBQ FROM TEAMS, RIGHT?
NO. Remember that this is a barbecue competition, NOT a food festival. The difference is that the teams are cooking only for the judges, team members and friends, not the general public. Additionally, local health department regulations prohibit teams from serving barbecue to the general public. There are barbecue vendors, as well as other food vendors that sell food to the public. Other food and beverages can be purchased through different on-site vendors.
SO IS THERE ANY WAY TO EAT THE BBQ THEN?
The general public has access to taste AND judge barbecue from the teams competing by purchasing a ticket for the Kingsford Tour of Champions. Tickets must be purchased in advance. This unique barbecue experience gives you the chance to judge and sample barbecue and listen to teams explain their craft. Typically we also have several championship teams vending.
WHAT AGES ARE ALLOWED TO ATTEND WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BARBECUE COOKING CONTEST?
All ages are welcome at World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest and each patron, regardless of age, will need a ticket.
DO I NEED CASH?
Most purchases can be made with cash or credit. ATMs are available at the park for your convenience.
ANY OTHER TIPS TO ENJOY WCBCC?
Be aware that all bags and purses are subject to search. Don't forget to wear comfortable shoes as well, the park is nearly a mile from end to end.
HOW DO I PURCHASE TICKETS?
Tickets for the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest can be purchased on Eventbrite! Each patron, regardless of age, will need a ticket.
CAN I PURCHASE TICKETS AT THE GATE?
No. General admission tickets will not be sold at the gate due to COVID restrictions. We advise purchasing your tickets online.
WHAT HAPPENS IF IT RAINS?
The World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest will be presented rain or shine.
ARE REFUNDS, RAIN CHECKS OR EXCHANGES AVAILABLE?
Unfortunately, we cannot offer refunds, rain checks or exchanges.
WHERE IS THE BEST PLACE TO GET UP-TO-DATE, ACCURATE WEATHER INFORMATION?
Visit Memphisweather.net for weather updates, radar coverage, graphics, statistics and more! Memphisweather.net is the official weather partner of the Memphis in May International Festival.
General Park Information
HOW DO I GET TO WCBCC ONCE IN MEMPHIS?
Take Transit: Memphis Area Transit Authority (MATA) operates bus service throughout the city, as well the Main Street, Madison and Riverfront trolley buses. Use google maps, download the TransLoc Rider app, call MATA at 901.27.MATA or go to www.matatransit.com to plan your route. Learn more about trolley bus service hours and any re-routes during the Memphis in May Festival here.
WHERE IS FIRST AID LOCATED?
First Aid stations are located in the north and center of Tom Lee Park. The stations are serviced by medical personnel through an agreement with EMHC (Emergency Mobile Health Care of Memphis.) Should you need emergency medical treatment, please go to the First Aid Stations or contact a member of security. Personnel are not allowed to dispense medications.
WHERE IS LOST AND FOUND?
Lost & Found is located at the Police Compound in the North section of Tom Lee Park during event hours. During off hours, please call 901-525-8711.
IS WCBCC WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE?
Tom Lee Park is wheelchair accessible. Please be aware that the grounds are for the most part natural terrain, so if it should rain there will be mud in some places.
Memphis in May does not provide personal care, golf cart rides, or push service. We also do not rent wheelchairs. Please come prepared. Viewing areas for patrons with mobility disabilities, plus one companion, are located on stage right at all main stages and the entry ramps are accessible from the sidewalk. The platforms have limited capacity and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To provide unobstructed lines of sight to the stage, patrons in the wheelchair platform area will be asked to sit during the performance and folding chairs will be available on a first-come, first serve basis. Accessible portalets are available at each of the portalet areas and are marked on the map in the event program.
ARE PETS ALLOWED?
Pets are not allowed. Service animals that are trained to assist an individual with a disability are allowed on the grounds of Tom Lee Park provided the animal does not pose a danger or threat to other service animals or patrons. Owners of service animals are responsible for the animal’s personal care. For entry into the events with a service animal, please bring your certificate and place the service animal in the appropriate vest to identify the animal. Service animals must be under the control of their owners at all times and must be on a leash at all times.
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