Local and out-of-town guests gathered in downtown Sevierville for an opportunity to enjoy great food and world-class bluegrass music at Sevierville’s 12th Annual Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass festival held May 20 and 21, 2016.
Forty-six cook teams attended the Bush’s Best Tennessee State Championship Barbeque Cook-Off held during the event, with Checkered Pig of Martinsville, Va. claiming Grand Champion while Late Night Whiskey Smokers from Lynchburg, Tenn. earned the Reserve Grand Champion award. Ancillary cook-off competitions included Anything Bush Beans, which was won by Chairman of the Boar from Maryville, Tenn., and Anything Swaggerty’s Farm Sausage, which was won by Soggy Bottom Smokers of Corryton, Tenn.
The People’s Choice Tasting Contest presented by Dolly Parton’s Lumberjack Adventure allowed event attendees to sample and judge competition pulled pork. E.T.’s BBQ of Palatka, Fla. claimed first prize in this fun event.
Twenty-one vocalists belted out a variety of Dolly Parton songs in unique styles during the 12th annual Mountain Soul Vocal Competition with Savannah Swatland, who came all the way from South Wales, N.Y., earning the top spot and grand prize in the 13+ age division for her performance of “When Jesus Comes Calling for Me.” Second place went to Katelyn Hedrick who sang “Light of a Clear Blue Morning” and third place honors went to Reganne Morris singing “From Here to the Moon and Back.” Both Hedrick and Morris are from Sevierville.
First place in the 12 and under category went to Erin Ott of Knoxville, Tenn. who sang “9 to 5.” Aubreana Lovell from Jefferson, N.C. took home second place for her rendition of “Jolene” while Kylie Forbes from nearby Parrotsville, Tenn. won third place singing “Jolene.”
“We are truly grateful to everyone who comes together to make this event happen each year and all of the people who attend – both those who live here locally and those who have joined us from out of the area,” says Sevierville Chamber of Commerce Director of Marketing & Communications Amanda Marr. “We are already looking forward to next year’s event and plan to make it bigger and better than ever before.”
Mark your calendars now to visit Sevierville for next year’s Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass Festival slated for May 19 and 20, 2017.
Feature Photo: Bush’s Best Tennessee State Championship Cook Off winners Checkered Pig of Martinsville, Va. pose with festival characters and Junior BBQ Ambassadors.