Atoka BBQ Fest 2019
All Photography used in the Atoka BBQ Fest article in the March/April 2019 issue of Cypress Magazine belongs to Greg Plunk.
West Tennessee is home to many great things, the Blues, beautiful landscapes, and its own unique style of Barbeque. This culinary region has many different styles and choices, but the best you’ll find is in West Tennessee. The Town of Atoka agrees. On April 5th and 6th, 2019 they will be hosting its seventh annual Atoka BBQ Festival at Nancy Lane Park in Atoka, TN. This event takes close to six months to plan every year.
Director Evans with the Town of Atoka Parks and Recreation spoke a little about the festival, “Our goal with an event this size is to have as much community involvement as possible. The Town of Atoka could not host an event such as this without the involvement from local businesses, non-profit organizations, local schools, volunteers, and so many others that call south Tipton County home.” In the past, the Atoka BBQ Fest has had Atoka Family Dentistry as a title sponsor and over the last two to three years some of the major sponsors have been South-West Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation, Quality Tire and Service LLC, Gateway Tire, Joyner Heating, and Air, APEX Home Builders, Pro-Site Construction, Firestone Complete Auto Care, WASCON Inc., and Creative Development Incorporated. The Town of Atoka is proud to announce Waste Pro is the title sponsor for 2019 festival.
The Town of Atoka began hosting this annual event in 2013 in conjunction with Memphis Barbeque Network (MBN) to help bring recognition to the Town, to continue strengthening relationships with local businesses, and to provide an opportunity for Atoka and its surrounding communities to have a weekend full of fun, excitement and world class BBQ. Atoka BBQ Fest is an event that impacts the community in a multitude of ways. The BBQ Fest brings an additional three to five thousand people to Atoka and South Tipton County throughout the weekend, therefore local businesses are positively affected by the number of visitors due to the competition.
There are all kinds of activities going on during the festival. On Friday, April 5th starting at 8:30 pm there is a Cornhole Tournament that’s open to the community. Winners get custom designed set of Atoka BBQ Fest Cornhole boards! Live bands will be performing from 5 pm to 11 pm on Friday the April 5th on the Atoka stage located in the BBQ competition space. The 5th Annual Kid’s Cook Off will be taking place on Friday, April 5th. The categories are Beef and Chicken. If you know a kid that loves cooking then this is the event for them! Children aged 6 to 16 can enter and must be accompanied by an adult. You can register before the event at Atoka Town Hall– 334 Atoka Munford Ave or on the day of the event by 5 pm. Both events have a $20 entry fee. Another event is the Mayor’s Pie Challenge, where they ask for the best pie makers to participate. It’s being held Saturday, April 6th. It is free and open to the Community, but you must bring a home-made pie. To check-in, bring your pie to the Judging Tent at 10 am. There will also be a family fun zone, with carnival rides and bounce houses at the festival where $5 will get you a one-day unlimited pass. If you would like more information, an application to enter any competitions held throughout the weekend, or rules for the competitions, please visit: http://www.townofatoka.com/pView.aspx?id=3019&catid=29
Director Evans wants everyone to know that the Atoka BBQ Festival would not be possible without our dedicated Town Staff, local sponsors, volunteers, and, of course, the BBQ competition teams that participate each year. Community involvement brings the BBQ festival back each year, so make your way out to Nancy Lane Park on April 5th and 6th to participate in all the activities and events going on!
The Town of Atoka appreciates the support from staff, local sponsors, volunteers, and the BBQ competition teams. Mayor Daryl Walker looks forward to this event every year because "the Atoka BBQ Fest brings the community together to celebrate Atoka's greatness. This event fosters community pride and shines a bright light on Atoka." Mayor Walker adds that "it's amazing what can be done when no one cares who gets the credit."
Please make your way out to Nancy Lane Park on April 5th and 6th to participate in all the activities and events going on!