Barbecue masters are preparing their grills for the 31st annual World Championship Invitational Barbeque, which happens Oct. 26 in Lynchburg. The Grand Champion will take home $25,000.
The competition is stiff with more than 100 domestic and international teams from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Germany, Italy and more trying to win the top prize. They’ll compete in seven categories: Pork Ribs, Pork Shoulder/Butts, Beef Brisket, Chicken, Dessert, Cook’s Choice and Jack Daniel’s Sauce.
To qualify for this competition, domestic teams must have won a state championship with a minimum of 25 competing teams, or a competition with more than 50 teams battling in the categories of Pork Ribs, Pork Butts, Chicken and Beef Brisket. The final competitors are then selected during a blind drawing of all eligible teams in August. Additionally, automatic invitations are given to the 2018 Jack Daniel’s Grand Champion and this season’s grand champions from Memphis in May, The American Royal World Series of Barbecue Open, and Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo World’s Championship Bar-B-Que Contest.
“Every year, the Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue brings out the best of the best in barbecue for a competitive, yet fun, weekend,” Lynne Tolley, KCBS-certified barbecue judge and great-grandniece of Jack Daniel, says. “The town of Lynchburg sees thousands of fans descend upon it, and that’s when it all really comes to life.”
The barbecue competition is the highlight of the weekend but there also games happening at the distillery. There’s a Country Dog Contest, Butt Bowling and Bung and Bag Toss competitions. The games start at 11 AM and continue throughout the day. Tours of the Jack Daniel Distillery from the Visitor Center will also be available from 9 AM to 4:30 PM. Barbecue judging starts at 11:30 AM and the awards presentation will take place at 5 PM.
Admission to the 31st Annual Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue is a voluntary donation to the Moore County School system. If you’d like more information, visit the official Jack Daniel’s website.