Save the date: High on the Hog BBQ Festival to benefit LowCountry Habitat for Humanity

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Plans are underway for the 3rd annual CBC National Bank High On The Hog BBQ Festival to benefit LowCountry Habitat for Humanity. The festival is the organization’s signature fundraising event and helps to generate much-needed funds for their housing program.  This year, LowCountry Habitat for Humanity plans to build three houses in northern Beaufort County.

Habitat Board member and BBQ Committee Chair, Bob Albon, heads up the effort and is excited about this year’s event. “We had been told ‘Beaufort is not a BBQ town,’” stated Albon.  “But, from the first year, we learned otherwise.  And, we continue to grow each year — more food, bigger entertainment and lots of fun.”

The festival will be held the first weekend in June at the old Whitehall Plantation on Lady’s Island.

Friday, June 6, from 6 to 10 p.m., will be “Everything Lowcountry” where teams cook their favorite dishes in the Lowcountry theme. Local high schools will be competing in a school challenge, serving samples of butts in a fundraiser for their Booster Clubs. The local band Deas Guys will take the stage at 7:30 p.m.; 94.5 The Surf will broadcast live that night. Wristbands are $20, active military, $18.

There will also be a VIP tent Friday night, sponsored by The Island News.  Tickets are $50 per person and include seating under the tent, unlimited samples while they last, two drink tickets per person and a Lowcountry dessert. Tables of ten available for $450.

Habitat Executive Director Brenda Dooley is grateful to the Beaufort community for their support in this endeavor. “We’re so grateful for the support of CBC National Bank, CenturyLink, Sea Eagle Market, and all our sponsors, as well as this community that comes out to enjoy this great event that helps us build houses and hope,” she said.

Saturday, June 7, is the barbecue competition. Butts and ribs are cooked starting Friday night, and the South Carolina BBQ Association certified judges will start Saturday morning at 10 a.m. Gates open to the public 12 until 4 p.m. Broke Locals will entertain.  Wristband price is $15, active military $14, kids under 12 free. Two-day ticket price is $30, active military $27.

According to Bob Albon, “We have purchased more than 3,000 pounds of butts and over 350 pounds of rubs for this year’s event. We expect 30 of the top competitive barbecue teams in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia to compete. At our original High on the Hog event, we only had 14 teams and sold out within an hour of opening doors. The message here is there will be plenty of food for samples.”

The Hog Wild Zone for the kids will be staffed by the Beaufort County YMCA and will include face painting, clowns, balloons, watermelon eating contest, multiple bounce houses, all free.

Pre-orders for fully cooked butts (8-10 pounds, pre-cooked weight) are available for $32 through June 3. The butts are cooked by five time 2013 winner Palmetto Smokehouse, ranked #2 in the state overall for 2013. You can also order pre-cooked BBQ chicken prepared by barbecue aficionado Island Meat Markets’ Julian Johnson for $20. The orders can be picked up at the festival.

For more information, visit www.highonthehogbeaufort.com. For more information on sponsorships, volunteer opportunities, or build partnerships, call Habitat at 843-522-3500.