By Sarrah Peters, News Editor
Noccalula Falls will host its 9th Annual Smoke on the Falls barbeque competition on April 13 and 14. The barbecue competition is sanctioned by the Kansas Barbeque Society.
Admission will be free on Friday, April 8. Gates will be open from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. A sausage cook-off, sponsored by Jimmy Dean Sausage, will take place.
On Saturday, April 14, tickets are $5 and entrance is free for children ages 3 and under. Gates will open at 10 a.m. Every attendee will be entered to win a Traeger Grill, one of the sponsors of Smoke on the Falls.
In the competition, 29 backyard teams will compete in chicken and ribs categories and 36 professional teams will compete in chicken, ribs, brisket and pork categories. In each division, a grand and grand reserve winner will be named. In each category, prizes will be given for first through tenth place.
The kids zone will feature inflatables, a mini-challenge set up by The Factory, the U.S. Army will hold a pull-up bar competition and a booth from the Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Arts. The Harlem Globetrotters will be on hand to sign autographs, demonstrate tricks and will host a children’s shooting contest.
Attendees can visit art and crafts and food vendors. Live music will be performed on the Coca-Cola stage. From 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., the Crambone Band will perform. From 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Peanut and Rush Band will perform.
At 12:30 p.m., the Popeyes chicken wing and biscuit eating contest will be held. Entrants can enter into two divisions, a youth division for ages 12 through 17 and an adullt division for those aged 18 and up. The entry fee will be $5. Space is limited, so sign up as soon as possible by contacting Janet Tarrance at email@example.com or 256-549-4658.
Tarrance said that the Smoke on the Falls festival has grown every year, and last year, about 3,000 people attended.
Sponsors for Smoke on the Falls include Gadsden regional Medical Center, Popeyes, Giant Johnson’s Food, Traeger Wood-Fired Grills, Blackstone Pub and Eatery, Coca-Cola, Jack’s, Gadsden Golf Carts, Paul’s Mountain Meats, Gadsden Parks and Recreation, Dawson and Co., HM Freeman Motors, Kansas City Barbeque Society, Greater Gadsden Tourism, Academy Sports, Dallas Plumbing and Drain, Snead Ag, Dean’s Sausage, The Factory, Bama-Q, Weaver Septic Service, the City of Gadsden and Noccalula Falls Park.
Also taking place on April 14 is the Black Creek Archery Tournament at 8 a.m. at the ball fields at Noccalula Falls. The contest will include a FITA and a 3-D Platform and Trail shooting competitions. Entrants can compete in one or both of the competitions. There will be a youth division for children ages 9-18 and an adult division.
Entry fees are $15 for the FITA competition, $20 for the 3-D Trail and Platform competition and $30 for both until April 1. After April 1, entry fees are $20 for the FITA competition, $25 for the 3-D Trail and Platform competition and $40 for both. The award ceremony will be held that afternoon. Entrants will receive a pass to attend Smoke on the Falls. T-shirts will be available for purchase. To register, visit www.noccalulafallspark.com and visit the special events section.
For more information, visit www.noccalulafallspark.com or the Noccalula Falls Park and Campground Facebook page.