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BBQ contest adds People's Choice award

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This year’s 10th Annual Smoke on the Mountain barbecue contest will be held July 18-19 in downtown Galax.

For the first time, the public will have a chance to vote in a People’s Choice contest, sponsored by Horton's Supermarket of Galax.

Starting at noon on Saturday, participants can pay a fee to sample competition quality “Q” from some of the best teams on the national barbecue contest circuit. The public will vote, and the People’s Choice prize will be presented along with the other awards at 6 p.m. at the Farmers’ Market Stage on North Main Street.

Each year, thousands of people go hog wild for a taste of authentic barbecue and a chance to see a professional cooking competition up close at Smoke on the Mountain each year in Galax.

This competition is the official Virginia state barbecue championship. The streets of downtown Galax are packed with people and the air is filled with fragrant clouds of hickory smoke and the tangy bite of vinegar and mustard, mingling with the sweetness of tomato and the mouth-watering sizzle of slow-cooked pork. Smoke on the Mountain promises all that, plus live music, shopping, children’s activities and other attractions.

Teams from all over the country — many of them you may have seen on the Food Network or Travel Channel — vie for the championship. And that’s more than just bragging rights. Winning in Galax will earn the champs a spot in the next year’s “Memphis in May” World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. The event is also a qualifying event for the Kansas City Barbecue Society.

And, for the first time this year, Smoke on the Mountain’s contest will be one of the qualifying contests for the World Food Championship in Las Vegas, to be held in November.

Live beach music from The Chaparrals, Band of Oz and The Tams, and a taste of bluegrass and old-time at Barr’s Fiddle Shop, distinguish this festival from other barbecue events.

Music will also be provided by DJ Andy Wright during the day.

In addition to the action of the contest, there will be several vendors set up downtown.

A food court will be located on North Main Street, at the Galax Farmers Market, with BBQ vendors, food trucks, ice cream, Chick-Fil-A, frog legs, gator, fried green tomatoes and more. Food court hours are 11 a.m. until late evening both days.

A wine and beverage garden is located on North Main, as well. Hours are noon to 11 p.m. both days.

A silent auction will be held from Friday at 11 a.m. to Saturday at 6 p.m. Auction items will be at the Chamber of Commerce information gazebo at the intersection of Main and Grayson streets.

The gazebo also will have schedules, T-shirts and more area information.

The event is sponsored by the Twin County Regional Chamber of Commerce.

SOTM 2014 SCHEDULE

FARMERS MARKET STAGE: NORTH MAIN
JULY 18
• DJ ANDY WRIGHT — NOON-6 P.M.
• BAND OF OZ — 8-11 P.M. — TICKETS $10

JULY 19
• DJ ANDY WRIGHT — NOON-3 P.M.
• THE CHAPARRALS — 3-6 P.M.
• SHAG DANCE CONTEST — 4 P.M.
• AUCTION FOR CUSTOM GRILL AND SILENT AUCTION WINNERS ANNOUNCED — 6:30 P.M.
• AWARDS CEREMONY — 7 P.M.
• THE TAMS — 8-11 P.M. — TICKETS $10

MUSIC AT BARR’S FIDDLE SHOP
SOUTH MAIN STREET
BLUEGRASS AND OLD-TIME MUSIC, JULY 18-19, NOON-3 P.M. — FREE

PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD
STARTING AT NOON ON JULY 19, SAMPLE BBQ FROM EACH TEAM AND VOTE. AWARDS AT 6 P.M., FARMERS MARKET STAGE. SPONSORED BY HORTON’S SUPERMARKET

For more information, visit smokeonthemountainva.com, call (276) 236-2184 or send email to info@twincountychamber.com.