The top two teams in the Kansas City Barbeque Society’s (KCBS) national rankings will square off against each other and a bevy of others during the inaugural Smoking up the Campground event at the Calhoun KOA campground on Nov. 30-Dec.1
3 Eyz BBQ, the No. 1 ranked team in the KCBS standings will bang heads with MUNCHIN HOGS @ THE HILTON, the No. 2 team in what could decide the national championship, according to Calhoun KOA owner Aaron Walkover.
As of Nov. 21, the two teams were separated by a mere 27 points heading into the final event of the season, the Smoking up the Campground event.
“These people are very serious about their barbecue,” Walkover said of the roughly fifty contestants taking part in the event.
“They don’t do it for money; the whole kick for them is hearing their named called at the awards ceremony.”
Over the past few months, Walkover has learned more about barbecue than he could have possibly imagined.
It’s a lot of work to prepare for an event like this, he said, but it benefits the United Way and, come on, it’s barbecue.
The contestants —more than 40 of which are considered professionals — will come from as far away as New York to compete for cash prizes and custom trophies, but more than anything, bragging rights.
“They’re all buddies with each other except when it is time to turn in their (barbecue) to the judges,” said Walkover, whose campground recently won the 2013 KOA President’s Award by Kampgrounds of America.
The event is also open to the public and all proceeds go to the United Way.
Doors open at 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30 at the campground, which is located at 2523 Redbud road in Calhoun. Festivities will last until around 10 p.m.
There will be live music, vendors on hand selling barbecue and for the first time in Gordon County, a beer garden.
On Saturday, the event continues at 8 a.m. and attendees can spend $10 to receive a wristband that allows them to try the contestant’s barbecue and cast their votes for the People’s Choice Award.
There will also be a motorcycle poker run on Saturday.
What is a poker run?
In a nutshell, attendees pay $30 to enter the poker run and spend part of the day traveling to different businesses collecting playing cards. The person who gathers the highest “poker hand” wins $150 and a custom trophy.
The $30 entry fee also gets the entrant a t-shirt and a barbecue lunch.
From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. NAPA is sponsoring a car cruise in.
Awards will be presented around 5:30 p.m. Saturday.
Prizes are available for attendees as well, including a raffle drawing for a barbecue smoker.
For more information, contact Walkover at 706-629-7511.
Check out the KCBS at www.kcbs.us