Smoke on the Water starts Friday

Published 7:01 pm Tuesday, October 12, 2021

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

The scent of barbecue will again fill the air around Stewart Parkway this weekend as Washington Noon Rotary hosts its annual Smoke on the Water festival, a competition that serves as a fundraiser for local charities.

On Friday and Saturday, some of the state’s best whole-hog cookers will come to Washington to compete in two contests — one for gas cookers, and a state championship competition for traditional cooking with wood or charcoal.

Barbecue contestants will be on-site by 5 p.m. on Friday evening. The festival will run from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and the festivities include a 5K race, a fire engine pull, a beer garden, a classic car show, a kids’ zone, arts, vendors and other amusements.

There will also be a chili cooking competition Saturday.

Organizers estimate that approximately 15,000 people will come to Washington for the event.

A complete schedule of events can be viewed on the event’s Facebook page; access that by searching “Smoke on the Water 2021” on Facebook. Here are some of the highlights:


·      Amusements at Crab Park opens, free to the public, from 4 – 8 p.m. Friday.

·      The vendor area opens from 5 – 9 p.m.

·      The Pig Parade begins at 6:15 p.m.

·      The pig-cooking showmanship competition judging begins at 7 p.m.

·      Cookers will receive their pigs at 8 p.m.


·      The 5K race begins at 8 a.m., along with the barbecue cookoff judging.

·      The car show registration period runs from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

·      Chili cookers can set up in the grass lot by Ribeyes from 9 – 9:30 a.m.

·      Amusements and vendors will be available from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

·      Registration for the Iron Order benefit ride for the Beaufort County Animal Shelter begins at 10 a.m., along with the chili cook off judging, classic car show, and chili and barbecue sales.

·      Barbecue and chili contest award winners will be announced on the Ribeyes deck from 11:30 a.m. – noon.

·      The festival ends at 5 p.m.

Check out the complete schedule to see more activities ranging from cornhole tournaments to live music to childrens’ activities.