SOTW to decide state championship

Published 7:10 pm Saturday, September 29, 2012

Washington Fire-Rescue EMS’s team competes in the 2011 fire-engine pull at Smoke on the Water. The event returns for this year’s Smoke on the Water Oct. 27. (Submitted Photo/Beaufort County Developmental Center)

For the second time in its history, Smoke on the Water will host North Carolina’s State Barbecue Cookoff Championship.
Only those pig cookers who have qualified for the state championship will compete in this event. The championship, in its 28th year, is sponsored by the N.C. Pork Council. Smithfield resident Fred Woodard, last year’s state champion, will defend his title this year. First prize in this year’s contest is $2,000 and a trophy.
For pig cookers who are not qualified for the state championship but want to cook pigs, they may do so in another contest — known as a backyard competition.
The 2012 Smoke on the Water, which runs Oct. 26-27 is an effort by the Washington Noon Rotary Club with its approximate 60 members, with assistance from area nonprofits and agencies.
“Got a call … from the N.C. Pork Council. They’re filled up. They’ve got 33 cookers who will be competing in the state portion,” said Rotarian Spencer Stanley, one of the chief Smoke on the Water organizers.
As for the backyard competition, there’s room for another six pig cookers in addition to the six he’s already got signed up for the event. The first-place finisher in this contest wins $1,000 and a trophy.
“We’ve got the fire-engine pull. That’s always a big draw,” he said.
Other Smoke on the Water events include an appearance by the Elizabeth II, which is based at Roanoke Festival Park in Manteo. The ship is expected to arrive at the Washington waterfront Oct. 25, with school groups touring the vessel Oct. 2. Public tours of the ship begin at 8:30 a.m. Oct. 27.
Elizabeth II is a reproduction of a 16th-century sailing vessel. As a composite, it represents ships used to transport colonists to the New World in the 1500s.
Elizabeth II is a square-rigged bark with three masts. It is 69 feet long and 17 feet wide. It draws eight feet of water. Its main topmast is 65 feet tall.
Aboard the vessel, costumed interpreters portray the sailors and soldiers of the Roanoke Voyages.
The chili contest returns this year, with a top prize of $500. Contestants must register by Oct. 15. The entry fee is $25 per entry, or $40 for two entries by the same cooking team.
Organizers are hoping to arrange a flyby by Navy jets over the Washington waterfront Oct. 27.
The Little Washington Sailing School is scheduled to hold a regatta on the Pamlico River at noon Oct. 27.
“As you know, all the proceeds from this go right back out into the community,” Stanley said of Smoke on the Water, a major fundraiser for the local Rotarians,
For more information about the barbecue contests or Smoke on the Water, contact Spencer Stanley at 252-940-8769 or by email at Also, visit for details about the event.
Anyone interested in entering the chili contest should contact Ben Davis at 252-917-2396 or visit, where registrations forms and contest rules may be found under the “Chili Cook Off” heading.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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