Bluegrass & BBQ


ABF-2017-36-copyBring an appetite for finger-licking food and an ear for feel-good music to Papa Joe’s Banjo-B-Que Music Festival

If you like a side of bluegrass music with your barbecue, you’re in luck. Generous helpings of both will be served up at the ninth annual Papa Joe’s Banjo-B-Que Music Festival at Evans Towne Center Park on Memorial Day weekend. 

Old-Crow-Medicine-Show-1“I don’t think there is anything else like Banjo-B-Que in the area,” says Hope Tyler, the Banjo-B-Que marketing and public relations director. “We have great music at a great price and so many family friendly activities.” 

Music lovers can tap their toes to the bluegrass, roots and Americana tunes of 20 bands that will perform during the weekend. They can enjoy the likes of Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit, Old Crow Medicine Show, The Infamous Stringdusters, Robert Randolph & The Family Band, The War & Treaty, The Mason Jars and more. Music will begin at 4:30 p.m. Friday and at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.

banjo_b_que_2017-314To satisfy your hunger, the festival will feature a Kansas City Barbeque Society Professional BBQ Cook-Off where 70-plus teams will compete for $40,000 in prize money. To quench your thirst, about 60 craft beers will be on tap – at $4 for a 16-ounce glass –  at the saloon and the beer garden. Other spirits such as domestic beer and wine will be available as well.

Pork-Chop-Review“The community can enjoy award-winning barbecue and craft beer,” Tyler says. “A lot of the breweries are in Georgia. We try to highlight them.”

At a Kids Cook-Off, 10 teams of two kids (with a parent) ages 10 to 15 can vie to cook the perfect burger. However, that’s not the only fun for the younger set – and the young at heart. The festival also will feature pig races, pony rides, a petting zoo, face painting and a Pork Chop Revue where costumed pigs will perform tricks. In addition, One String Pork & Bean with Jeff Robbins will offer classes throughout the day for children to make a musical instrument out of a tin can. Start times for the pig races each day will be posted on signage, and the park’s splash pad and playground will be open as well.

DSCF7161Be sure to bring blankets, chairs, sunscreen and bug spray. ATMs will be available, but bring cash if you want to avoid the lines.

All proceeds will benefit the Joseph R. Pond Memorial Foundation, which supports local charities with a special focus on cancer-related organizations. 

The festival also is looking for volunteers to fill positions ranging from ticket scanners to beer pourers. Anyone who is interested can sign up on the website,

Pig-RacesIf You Go:
What: Papa Joe’s Banjo-B-Que Music Festival

When: 4 p.m. – 11 p.m. Friday, May 25 and 10:30 a.m. – 11 p.m. Saturday, May 26

Where: Evans Towne Center Park

How Much: General admission – $45 single day and $75 weekend; VIP – $150 Friday, $200 Saturday and $275 weekend; children 12 and under are free with a ticketed adult, but all VIP guests must have a ticket regardless of age 

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