Last year, The City of Owensboro and Visit Owensboro reinvigorated the International Bar-B-Que Festival. After a couple of interesting years due to COVID including a creative drive-thru festival, BBQ & Barrels came back better than ever.

Visit Owensboro
Visit Owensboro
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Downtown streets were packed last year as folks from all over the tri-state came to enjoy the best BBQ and burgoo made by local restaurants and Catholic church cooking teams.  The community atmosphere was unmatched as veteran pit-masters served up their legendary meats and tried new things like smoked BBQ fries and bologna (my personal favorite from last year.)

Barb Birgy
Barb Birgy
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Bruce Tucker from Precious Blood's cooking team said "We have been a part of the BBQ weekend downtown for a long time.  Our parish is excited about the new look of the event and the opportunities for us to showcase our traditional BBQ weekend favorites, in addition to some new barbecue options." The church cooking teams set up along the courthouse working their meat magic really set the tone for an authentic experience.

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Adding "Barrels" to the weekend was also a huge hit.  The Bourbon Experience at the Owensboro Convention Center showcased over 30 distilleries. Attendees of this sold-out event enjoyed samples of bourbon while celebrating Owensboro's rich bourbon history. This year, the event will feature even more distillers in a bigger space for anyone who missed out last time thanks to sponsor, Baird Private Wealth Management.

I would say "more" of everything is what we can expect from 2024 BBQ Barrels. More BBQ vendors, more art vendors, more cars with the KY Champions Motorcar Invitational, and more live entertainment which will be announced on February 5th. Yearly favorites like the carnival rides, BBQ 5K, and the Backyard BBQ Cookoff will also return in full force  Let me just go ahead and say, it's gonna be the best year yet.

Mark your calendars for the kick-off at noon on Friday, May 10th and the fun will continue on Saturday, May 11th. Tickets for the Bourbon Experience go on sale on February 29th. For more information, visit BBQandBarrels.com Check out these great pictures from last year!

Smokin' Good Time! Over 100 Photos Show Tons of Fun at BBQ Festival

It was smokin' in Downtown Owensboro this weekend for BBQ & Barrels. The event featured delicious food, continuous live music, and a carnival for the kids, with beautiful views of the Ohio River. Let's take a look back at a fun weekend.

Gallery Credit: Barb Birgy

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