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Sevierville’s 15th Annual BLOOMIN’ BARBEQUE & BLUEGRASS Promises Best Fest Yet

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (Glen Rose Photo)

Sevierville, Tenn. – Sevierville’s fifteenth annual Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass festival will take place May 17-18, 2019. This family-friendly event will once again bring barbeque cook teams from all over the United States to Sevierville to compete for $17,500 in cash and prizes and the title of Tennessee State Champion in the Bush’s Best TN State Championship Cook Off. Rounding out the event is toe-tapping bluegrass music, incredible arts and crafts, kids’ games and the Mountain Soul Vocal Competition honoring Sevierville’s favorite hometown girl, Dolly Parton.

Take a little time to visit with the barbeque cook teams you’ve seen on cable channels like the Food Network as you stroll through the “Que Zone.” Then make sure you bring a lawn chair for the free bluegrass concerts with rising stars and legends of the bluegrass genre. Friday night’s lineup includes Priscilla & Little RicKee ft. Louisa Branscomb, Jimbo Whaley & Greenbrier, Michael Cleveland & Flame Keeper, and Balsam Range.

Saturday’s entertainment starts at 10am with performances from local dance troupes. The music begins around Noon with scheduled performances by the Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud Band, Mountain Ruckus (presented by Dolly Parton’s Stampede), Dale Ann Bradley, Love Canon, Phil Leadbetter and the All-Stars of Bluegrass, and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

You’ll also find great musicians performing on the Bush’s Best Community Stage throughout the event, including Billie Lafollette, The Reunited, Chad McWilliams, and Josiah & the Greater Good. There will also be live music in some of the downtown restaurants during the weekend’s festivities, including performances by The Griffin Bros. Band at Graze Burgers on Friday and Saturday.

On Saturday, the competition starts early. Watch as championship cook teams turn in their competition meats. Then stay for the announcement of BBQ champs at 4pm. During the competition, the teams will cook an estimated 2,832 pounds of meat including 20 pounds of pulled pork, 24 pounds of brisket, 5 pounds of chicken and 10 pounds of ribs each. Winning teams will receive recognition in Chicken, Ribs, Pork and Brisket as well as specialty categories like “Anything Bush Beans”, “Anything Swaggerty’s Farm Sausage”, Sauce and Dessert.

The Kids’ Zone adds fun and enrichment for kids and families who attend Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass. Enjoy bounce houses, face painters, and old-time toys in the Kids’ Zone. All of these attractions will be open until 9pm each day of the event.

Artists – and those with art in their hearts – will love the Chalk on Bruce event during the festival. The Sevierville Commons Arts Council, local artists, and the general public will all draw together to create fun street art on Bruce Street.

Musicians can get in on the fun during Friday night’s Late Night Jam presented by Dolly Parton’s Stampede. The jam, which takes place the night of Friday, May 17 at Courthouse Donuts in downtown Sevierville, is a great way to keep the music going from 10pm until 2am!

History buffs are invited to come along on one of four Historic Walking Tours throughout downtown Sevierville led by area historians and volunteers. Plan to take a tour on Friday, May 17 at 6pm, or Saturday, May 18 at 10am, 2pm or 4pm. The tours are sponsored by Answer Quick.

A highlight of Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass is the 15th Annual Mountain Soul Vocal Competition Finals held on May 18. Finalists from around the nation will sing their hearts out for a chance to win cash and prizes. This competition, the only one of its kind that festival organizers know of, honors the songwriting of Dolly Parton. Competitors, male and female, must sing a song written by Dolly Parton (there are over 3,000) and do so in their own style (rock, rap, country, bluegrass, swing, soul, etc.).

The People’s Choice Tasting Contest presented by Hatfield & McCoy Dinner Feud, is a fun element to the event and allows event-goers to sample and vote for their favorite championship pulled pork from participating teams. A returning element to this year’s event will be two lines – a Gold Line and a Red Line. Patrons choose the line they want to sample from when purchasing their tickets. Sample the que, vote for your favorite and pull for your team to win! Guests can purchase tickets for $10 in advance by calling the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce at 865-453-6411 or at the festival. The People’s Choice Tasting Contest takes place between 2:30pm and 3:30pm on Saturday, May 18.

Admission to Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass and the concerts are free thanks to great sponsors, including the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce which encourages you to stay in Sevierville while visiting Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass. For great lodging and more information about Bloomin’ Barbeque & Bluegrass, call (888) 889-7415 or visit us online at www.BloominBBQ.com.

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