Saturday, May 5, 2018

FREE parking and shuttle Saturday from Vernon Park Mall (834 Hardee Rd) to BBQ Fest.
Shuttle will leave from four locations at the mall from 8:30a.m.- 7:30p.m.
Folding strollers are welcome.

Lovick's Café 
6 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Lovick’s Café, Herritage Street
Festival burgers, hot dogs, fries and more! Kids Meals with FREE balloons.

Hog Happenin' 
Cook team breakfast 6:45 a.m. / sponsored by McDonald's Restaurants
Tammy Kelly, chairperson
On-site judging of BBQ, 8 a.m.

Opening ceremony
9 a.m. • Location: Herritage Street stage
National Anthem
Welcome: Mayor Don Hardy
Contact: Eric Cantu, 252-560-8031

The O'Neil Luxury Hotel lobby tours
9 a.m.-4 p.m. • Location: 200 N. Queen Street
The O'Neil Luxury Hotel, winner of the 2015 Historical Restoration Award, is a former Farmer's & Merchant's Bank that has been revitalized after it was vacant for 30 years. The O'Neil will host lobby tours every half-hour.

Open Car & Truck Show
Registration: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. • Awards: 3 p.m., at the Car Show Stage
History comes rolling in as more than 100 classic cars and trucks roll in to the festival for the Sale Auto Mall Fifth Annual Open Car Show. Hosted by Carolina Classic Cruisers and the BBQ Festival on the Neuse, the show is a rolling history lesson for all to experience! Proceeds benefit the Ronald McDonald House.
Contact: Robert Stroud: 252-939-5503, Judy Stroud: 252-939-5292, Johnny & Laura Hussey: 252-521-3033

CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center special event (FREE ENTRY DAY)
9 a.m.-5 p.m. • Location: 100 N. Queen Street (Corner of Queen Street and Caswell Street)
Discover the CSS Neuse Interpretive Center -- encompassing more than 40,000 square feet, the world's only commissioned Confederate Ironclad is displayed and permanently preserved. The CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center will host a program that examines medicine during the Civil War. Gary Riggs, a Civil War medical researcher, and Matthew Young, site manager, will present programs at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., titled “The Impact of the Civil War on Medical Technology.” There will also be a temporary exhibit featuring medical instruments and devices from the Civil War.

Live Entertainment TBA
10 a.m. • Location: Main Stage (Herritage Street)

Arts Market
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Corner of Blount and Herritage Streets
Enjoy the Arts Market, which offers beautiful works of art from painting to pottery and sculptures to scarves. Don't miss this great shopping experience! Plus, see the Plein Air Exhibit and Sales.

10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Corner of Gordon and Herritage Streets and Gordon Street into Pearson Park
Come down to Herritage Landing and release the ARTist within by painting a predesigned canvas depicting the festival and downtown scenes. The completed works of art will be on display for weeks after the festival in downtown Kinston. ALL ages are welcomed to participate. Discover the artist in family as your child creates works of art during the festival at the Community Council for the Arts Art Tent! 

Find a Hog Bot!
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Festival area
Find cute little Hog Bots hidden throughout the Art Fest area to claim great prizes! You even get to keep your Hog Bot! Each Hog Bot will be marked with the location where a prize can be claimed. Hog Bots are handmade by local artists and sponsored by ART 105 and Community Council For the Arts.

Farmer's Market
10 a.m.-4 p.m. • Location: Lenoir County Farmer's Market, 100 N. Herritage Street
From new potatoes and mixed greens to herbs and spices, sauces and sinfully delicious baked goods, you will find everything you need for that Southern Sunday Dinner at the Festival Farmer's Market. Area growers sell an abundance of fruits, vegetables and other locally-produced items from farm to table! Celebrity guests Fred Thompson and Sheri Castle will be at the Farmers Market from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

4-H Kids Fest
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Pearson Park
The Lenoir County 4-H Kids Fest will feature a hands-on experience with agriculture. Youth will explore the 4-H Field of Fun and be able to pick and dig up produce on their walk through our farm life simulation. After gathering the produce, they will “sell” their corn, carrots and other commodities at the market for “money” that they can spend at the local 4-H store. Our store will feature many exciting items like cups, cozies, visors, sunglasses and ice cream. This is an exciting and educational event that youth are sure to love! We will also have face-painting, crafts and other activities available. Come get your wristband and explore agriculture. We look forward to seeing you there!

Meet Pitmaster Sam Jones
10 a.m.-1 p.m. • Location: Herritage Street near Farmers Market
Stop in for a visit as pitmaster Samuel Jones cooks up a farm-raised whole hog. Cooked for hours in an oakwood cooker, this hog will become the featured dish to be sopped in mouth-watering barbecue sauces competing in the Sauce Boss Competition Saturday.

Beer Garden
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Caswell and Herritage Streets near the Farmer's Market
Purchase craft beer by the cup.

Wine Garden
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Between Gordon and Herritage Streets near the Farmers Market
Join us as we celebrate the vast growing wine industry in North Carolina. Again this year, the BBQ Festival is offering wine tasting in our Wine Garden, where wineries will have samples available by the glass and the bottle. Winery tastings will be offered Friday night and Saturday during festival hours. The Wine Garden will be located in a quaint wine vineyard setting that will provide for relaxation and the opportunity to sample these fine wines. You will experience some of the best wines that North Carolina has to offer. 

Vendor's Market
10 a.m.-7 p.m. • Location: Gordon, Mitchell, North and Herritage Streets and in Pearson Park
Squeal with delight as you peruse through more than 100 vendor's items available in the Vendors Market! From mouthwatering sweet treats to personalized T-shirts and hot sunshades you are sure to find something to "pig out" on, enjoy or take home! Just look for the boat and you will find the Vendor Market on Gordon, Mitchell, North and Herritage Streets and in the park. 

CSS Neuse II Living History Event
10 a.m.-5 p.m. • Location: Corner of Gordon and Herritage Streets
Guided tours offered during the festival. Contact: John Nix, 252-560-2150

Piggly Wiggly's Mr. Pig
10 a.m.-5 p.m. • Location: Festival grounds
Meet the iconic Mr. Pig!

"Let the feast begin!"
BBQ plates and sandwiches for sale
11 a.m.-7 p.m. (or until sold out early)
BBQ plates: $8
BBQ sandwiches: $4
Now with four convenient BBQ sale locations! 
• Herritage Street between Blount and North Streets/behind Mother Earth: BBQ plates, sandwiches and beverages
• Corner of Herritage and Caswell Streets: BBQ plates, sandwiches and beverages
• BBQ to-go (NEW LOCATION!): Vernon Park Mall, BBQ plates and sandwiches

Vanilla Gorillas
11 a.m.-12 p.m. • Location: North Street Stage

Vivian Howard's Deep Run Roots Food Truck
11 a.m.-2 p.m. • Location: Lenoir County Farmer's Market
Stop by and purchase food from Chef Vivian Howard's Deep Run Roots food truck. Howard has developed a line of spices and rubs. These spices and rubs will be for sale during the BBQ Festival. 

Southern Sugar Bakery
11 a.m. - 2 p.m. • Location: Lenoir County Farmers Market
We are excited to welcome back Southern Sugar Bakery to the festival. If you enjoyed seeing the ladies from Southern Sugar Bakery on the Today Show, come meet them in person at the festival! Southern Sugar Bakery has transitioned from a home based bakery to a commercial bakery. Their specialties are custom decorated sugar cookies and custom cookie cakes. Each cookie is a work of art….and good doesn’t begin to describe them….just ask the folks on the Today Show….they loved the bakers and the cookies! Angie and Christin will be doing special cookie decorating demos at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Farmers Market. Be sure to stop by for a sweet treat!

Meet food writer Sheri Castle
11 a.m.-2 p.m. • Location: Lenoir County Farmer's Market
Sheri Castle is an award-winning freelance food writer, recipe developer, recipe tester and culinary instructor. She is known for melding storytelling and culinary expertise. Sheri is the author of multiple books, including "The New Southern Garden Cookbook: Enjoying the Best from Homegrown Gardens, Farmers' Markets, Roadside Stands, and CSA Farm Boxes," and "Rhubarb." She writes for a number of national magazines and is a popular speaker at food and literary festivals. Sheri hails from the Blue Ridge Mountains and now lives in Fearrington Village. She is fueled by farmers’ market fare, searching for the right word and excellent bourbon. Check her out at

Meet food writer Fred Thompson
11 a.m.-2 p.m. • Location: Lenoir County Farmer's Market
Fred is the author of 10 cookbooks and will be featuring two of those books at the BBQ Festival: "Southern Sides: 250 Dishes That Really Make the Plate" and "Kamado Grill Cookbook: Foolproof Techniques for Smoking & Grilling". In addition to his cookbooks, Fred will tempt our palates with samples of sides and will entertain you with stories of all kinds. Fred writes a column, "The Weekend Gourmet," for the News and Observer of Raleigh and is the publisher of "Edible Piedmont," a magazine about foods from the piedmont to the coast.

Brewery tours at Mother Earth Brewing
Tours every hour from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. • Location: 311 N. Herritage St.
Tours and taproom will be open all day.
Contact: Trent Mooring, 252-208-2437

Amusement Rides
11 a.m.-11 p.m. • Location: Pearson Park off of Mitchell Street
Both adult and youth rides will be available, including a Ferris wheel, Super Shot Drop Tower, Swing Ride, Dragon Wagon and merry-go-round. Carnival rides are presented by Inner’s Amusements, a family-owned amusement company that has been in operation since 1909 and has a variety of carnival rides providing fun for the entire family.

First Battle of Kinston Battlefield tour
11 a.m. • Location: 100 N. Queen St.
Tour bus will leave from in front of the CSS Neuse Interpretive Center. Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the scheduled time for the bus to leave.

Saturday Seafood Fry
11 a.m.-until • Location: Reynolds Seafood, 336 N. Herritage St.

Fourth annual cornhole tournament; St. John’s Masonic Lodge No.4 A.F. & A. M.
Check-in: 11:30 a.m.; first toss: 12:30 p.m. • Location: North Street, between Olvera Street Taqueria and The Red Room
Thousands of competitive cornhole players are out there – in parks, backyards, parking lots, bars, wherever they can get a game – thirsty for a chance to show off their game in an official tournament. Here is your opportunity compete in this very popular pastime.
$40 per team (entry fee includes meal)
Prizes: First - $300, second - $100, third - $50
(Based on 45 teams; prorated for fewer teams)
Double-elimination tournament
For entry forms, please contact Lynn Hill at 252-560-1181 or; or John Lee at 252-520-4633 or
“Airmail” challenge! Buy-backs also available. For more information, visit

The Shimmies
12-2 p.m. • Location: North Street Stage

Dance Etc. performance
12:30-1:30 pm • Location: Herritage Street Stage
Award-winning performances by dancers from Dance Etc., including reigning Miss Kinston/Lenoir County and Kinston/Lenoir County Outstanding Teen

2018 BBQ Festival on the Neuse, Hog Happenin’ Awards Presentation
1:45 p.m. • Location: Herritage Street Stage
Announcement of the 2018 BBQ Festival on the Neuse Hog Happenin’ Cook off and Showmanship Awards

Live Entertainment TBA
2 p.m. • Location: Herritage Street Stage

Battle of Wyse Fork tour
2 p.m. • Location: 100 N. Queen St.
Tour bus will leave from in front of the CSS Neuse Interpretive Center. Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the scheduled time for the bus to leave.


Sauce Boss Competition
2-4 p.m. • Location: Main Stage area, Pearson Park
More tha $500 in prize money to be awarded!
Take home "Sauce Boss" bragging rights as "Our State" magazine and Skylight Inn sponsor the fifth annual Sauce Boss Competition! A distinguished panel of judges will choose the award-winning sauce!
Festival attendees have an opportunity to sample the sauces and vote for the People's Choice Award by purchasing a $8 wristband  Buy your tickets in advance by calling the Kinston-Lenoir County Chamber of Commerce at 252-527-1131.
Sauces will be served with BBQ cooked by pitmaster Samuel Jones! The award sponsor, the Jones Family of the Skylight Inn, has been cooking great BBQ the same way over wood for more than 150 years! Enter your killer sauce for only a $20 entry fee!
Ready to enter? Enter online using our form, or by calling 252-527-1131.


Jackson Heights Band
2-4 p.m.

The Roman Sams
2-5 p.m. • Location: North Street Stage

Live Entertainment TBA
4 p.m. • Location: Herritage Street Stage

Hugo Volunteer Fire Department Great Neuse River Rubber Duck Race
4 p.m. • Location: Riverfront by the Farmer's Market
All prizes are donated by local Kinston merchants.
Contact: Bill Ellis, Kinston-Lenoir County Parks and Recreation Department, 252-939-3332.

Festival parking and shuttles
The festival area and streets are closed to vehicles and parking. Parking is in the former J.C. Penney parking lot at Vernon Park Mall. Shuttles will pick up visitors every 15 minutes.