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BBQ Throw Down to feature BBQ, home brew competitions & more than $20,000 in cash and prizes

Rocky Mount, N.C.-The ninth annual Eastern Carolina BBQ Throw Down will be held in front of the Helen P. Gay Historic Rocky Mount Train Station in downtown Rocky Mount on Friday, Oct. 7, 2016 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The weekend of festivities will include a BBQ competition, the second annual home brew competition, food vendors, two stages of live entertainment, children’s activities and much more.

Sanctioned by the Kansas City BBQ Society, this year’s BBQ competition will include over 50 cook teams from throughout the east and more than 60 certified judges. There will be four categories in the competition, including chicken, ribs, pork and beef brisket.

The BBQ competition, open to any BBQ professional, will result in a Grand Champion winning a prize of $5,000. According to Susan Phelps, special events coordinator for the city of Rocky Mount, aside from the Grand Champion, there are additional opportunities to win cash and prizes.

“By the end of the BBQ Throw Down, over $20,000 will be awarded to participants, because there are 53 opportunities to win,” says Phelps. “A favorite contest of attendees is the Pepsi’s People’s Choice Award where the public gets to participate through purchased ballots. This contest will be held on Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.”

Now in its second year, the Eastern Carolina Home Brew Competition, sponsored by Rocky Mount Mills, will also take place during the festivities. The Grand Prize winner will receive a hand-blown glass trophy, $200 and the title of “Best in the East.”  Phelps says that with all the positive response to last year’s competition, they are expecting even more this year.

“Last year, the competition was wonderful, and we really look forward to great things again this year,” says Ball. “We will also have the beer garden again with some amazing North Carolina brews, including at least one from Rocky Mount favorite, Sweet Taters.”

Cook teams and brewers are not the only winners at this year’s BBQ Throw Down. Guests may win too. On Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016, attendees can play Plinko at the Public Utilities Booth for an opportunity to win $100 off of their utility bill.

Entertainment will be prevalent at the annual festival, with incredible groups taking the stage throughout the event. On Friday night, Oct. 7, Rocky Mount Public Utilities will sponsor the BBQ Bash on the main stage in front of the train station, featuring music from Trial by Fire Journey Tribute.  Local favorite Land O’ Glory kicks off the music Saturday, Oct. 8 at 11 a.m. on the Train Station lawn.  Taking the stage at 12 p.m. will be the Backyard Groove Band. Entertainment will also be provided by Denver Nixon Music and the Wallers.

“The BBQ Throw Down is something people really don’t want to miss,” says Ball. “We will have some of the best barbecue in the country right here in downtown Rocky Mount.  There is just so much to do for the whole family.”

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NC Spotlight:

John Malachi (September 6, 1919 – February 11, 1987) was an American jazz pianist.

Malachi was born in Red Springs, North Carolina on September 6, 1919, and grew up in Durham, North Carolina.[1] At the age of ten he moved with his family to Washington, D.C.[1] He was a self-taught musician.[1]

Malachi was a member of the epochal Billy Eckstine Bebop Orchestra in 1944-45 and again in 1947. He also worked with Illinois Jacquet in 1948, Louis Jordan in 1951, and a series of singers including Pearl Bailey, Dinah Washington, Sarah Vaughan, Al Hibbler, and Joe Williams.[2]

Malachi opted out of the traveling life of the touring jazz musician in the 1960s, living roughly the last decade and a half of his life in Washington, D.C. freelancing, playing with touring bands and artists when they stopped in Washington, and leading music workshops at clubs like Jimmy MacPhail's Gold Room and Bill Harris's Pig's Foot. Malachi's generosity towards younger musicians was legendary.[3] One of the musicians he helped influence recalls that younger players referred to his workshops as "The University of John Malachi".[4][5]

Malachi is credited with creating the nickname "Sassy" for Sarah Vaughan, with whom he worked with the Eckstine Orchestra and later directly with her. Malachi was fond of categorizing jazz pianists into "acrobats" and "poets", classifying himself among the latter.[citation needed]

John Malachi is the great-grandfather of Carolyn Malachi. The singer, poet, and rap artist received a Best Urban / Alternative Performance Grammy Award nomination in 2011.[6]

Read more at Wikipedia:

Listen to John Malachi with Sarah Vaughan on Youtube:

Visit the North Carolina Aquariums  


The Aquariums were established in 1976 to promote an awareness, understanding, appreciation and conservation of the diverse natural and cultural resources of North Carolina's ocean, estuaries, rivers, streams and other aquatic environments. Visit one today.

The long-term health and sustainability of animals in the wild and in our care is a top priority for the North Carolina Aquariums. Through mission-based initiatives and daily efforts, our team members are dedicated to responsible conservation. Current areas of focus include threatened and endangered species of amphibians, sea turtles and sharks. In addition, as an accredited-member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and a partner in SAFE: Saving Animals From Extinction, we work diligently to keep the most vulnerable animals from disappearing and protect them for future generations.


374 Airport Road
Manteo, NC 27954
(252) 475-2300


1 Roosevelt Boulevard
Pine Knoll Shores, NC 28512
(252) 247-4003


900 Loggerhead Road
Kure Beach, NC 28449
(910) 772-0500


7223 South Virginia Dare Trail Nags Head, NC, 27959
(252) 255-1501


Devil's Rock

Devil's Rock is said to hold the footprint of Satan himself. Located off State Road 1131 in Largo, there's a place where the print of a left foot that is slightly larger than human size can be seen imprinted deep into a large rock.

How did The Devil's footprint get in a rock in North Carolina? This is one North Carolina legend that starts in South Carolina. There, in Flat Rock, the Devil's matching right footprint can be found.

Some time in the last century, there was a man in Flat Rock who was reported to be one of the meanest men ever to walk the Earth. This man spent his time brawling, drinking, cussing, and racking up a list of sins so long that if you wrote them all out the paper would stretch for miles.

Read More at North Carolina Ghosts


Some of North Carolina’s greatest treasures can be found off the beaten path. You never know what you might find... an old-time general store, local artisan, or simply a picturesque view that takes your breath away. You’ll be swept away by the untouched natural landscape found on the backroads of this rural county.

In Anson County, you can discover all that and more. Come. Visit. Surround yourself with the beauty of North Carolina’s best kept secret.


Please support our Wounded Warriors

Hands Together is a nonprofit organization devoted to educating, inspiring and encouraging people to understand the importance of responding to the needs of the poor and disadvantaged. Our Mission, as we strive to build a more compassionate and human world, proceeds from the spiritual belief that we are all members of one, equal, interconnected family under a loving God.



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