The first annual Fire House BBQ Festival and Cook-off, sponsored by the Donalsonville Downtown Development Authority, is set to fire up the grills and cook up a fun filled event for the entire family this Saturday, April 6. Twenty-eight teams will be competing in the Georgia Barbecue Association sanctioned event for a chance to show off their cooking skills and compete for a cash prize and bragging rights. The event will be held at the new Donalsonville Fire Station located at 300 North Tennille Avenue in Donalsonville.
On Saturday, April 6 the BBQ Festival officially opens at 10 a.m. Live music featuring Six Guns Down will perform from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and a wide variety of food and beverage selections for the entire family will be on hand. The Seminole County Young Farmers will be selling hamburgers and BBQ sandwiches, and additional vendors will be offering flavored coffees, smoothies, drinks, Italian ice, funnel cakes, cotton candy, candy apples and more.
A huge fun zone will be open from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. for the young and the young at heart. Kid Zone arms bands will be sold for $10 and will give the wearer unlimited all day fun.
There will be something for everyone to do on Saturday; take a tour of the BBQ team tents and watch the master chefs in action, walk back in time as you visit the Memories Antique Car Show and don’t forget to buy a ticket for the festival’s end of day basket raffle.
The Georgia Barbecue Association Cook-off opens for the competitors with a cooking team meeting at 5 p.m. on Friday, April 5. Once each team has been cleared for participation, flames will be lit and smoke will rise to signal the cooking to start and the competition will officially begin. BBQ teams will cook through the night hoping, that with the morning light, their grilling skills, secret techniques and ingredients will have helped them to grill up the winning recipe for their part of the event’s $10,000 prize package.
Awards and cash prizes will be presented at 4 p.m. The event’s payout for cooking categories of pork loin, pulled pork and ribs is $10,000. The Grand Champion and Reserve Champion will receive $2000 plus a trophy; first through fifth place winners will receive a cash award plus a trophy and sixth through tenth place winners will receive a cash award plus a certificate.
All BBQ cooked by the competing teams in this year’s competition will be donated for the mouth watering enjoyment to all Seminole County first responder and communication agencies.
Sponsors for the event are Gold Level: SunSouth and Kelly Crop Insurance; Silver Level: Birdsong Peanuts; Bronze Level: Franklin’s Spring Creek and PeoplesSouth Bank; Friends of the Cook Off: First Port City, NAPA, Rushing Oil, Five Star and Espy Gray.
Founded in 2007, the Georgia Barbecue Association has established itself as the second largest barbecue competition sanctioning organization in the state. The GBA was conceived by a handful of individuals who thought it was time to let the rest of the nation know that the best barbecue comes from Georgia.