Bands & BBQ at the Point
Carrollton, Ky., barbecue festival
to mark its 10th year
Two-day event offers live music,
fireworks, air show, food and fun
CARROLLTON, Ky. (September 2021) – Charlie Jackey of Blue Chip BBQ knows a little something about competing at Carrollton, Ky.’s Bands and BBQ competition. The Louisville, Ky.-based team has competed in Carrollton’s contest every year since it began, making this year their 10th year at Bands and BBQ.
“We’re the only team that’s been there since they started,” said Jackey.
Bands and BBQ is scheduled to take place Sept. 10-11 at Carrollton’s Point Park. The festival will be celebrating its decade in existence with a weekend full of activities for all ages to enjoy.
“We had to skip last year because of Covid, so we are really excited about this year, especially with it being our 10th year,” said Misty Wheeler, executive director of Carrollton-Carroll County Tourism.
From left, Charlie Jackey and his son, Jeremy, pose with Jeremy's son, Eli. The team is a regular at the Bands & BBQ event.
On Friday, Sept. 10, Jordan Wilson Coalition will perform from 8-11 p.m. On Saturday, Sept. 11, music begins at 11:30 a.m., and the entire day is packed with events until the 11 p.m. fireworks show. Throughout the day on Saturday, Bands and BBQ will feature two air shows by Madison, Ind., stunt pilot Cliff Robinson, plus a tractor show. The Handcrafted and Homespun Craft Market will take place for the second year from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with more than 60 vendors selling their wares.
Admission is free, which Wheeler said is one of the primary draws of the event. Visitors will have the chance to purchase food from various vendors and drinks provided by Neely Family Distillery.
Both barbecue competitions, the Kansas City Barbeque Society-sanctioned event for pros and the Backyard amateur contest, will take place on Saturday. There are currently 20 pro teams and 10 Backyard teams competing with more registering for Bands and BBQ each day.
Blue Chip BBQ has won four out of its nine competitions at Bands and BBQ and came in second just once. Jackey competes alongside his son, Jeremy Jackey, whom he says is the main cook. They are joined by his brother-in-law, Dennis Cheatham. “I started out cooking at home in my backyard for about 20 years. Our first competition was in 2009, and we came in first. We were hooked from then on,” he said.
Blue Chip BBQ grew from that first win into a team to beat with a packed competition schedule. “Before Covid, we participated in around fifteen contests a year, mostly in Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, and Indiana,” said Jackey. “It’s really weekend stress relief for us.” Blue Chip BBQ also offers some catering services in the Louisville area.
Since their beginning in ‘09, Blue Chip BBQ has seen ten grand champion wins and ten reserve champion placements. In 2016, the team was also invited to the Jack Daniels World Championship where they placed second in the ribs category. “Ribs have been good to us. They’re our best category,” said Jackey.
Blue Chip BBQ operates out of a 24-four foot enclosed trailer that includes sleeping quarters, a bathroom and a place to cook. Jackey said that the best part of competing is getting to know the other competitors and the closeness of the teams. “Barbecue is so competitive, but if you need something, 99.9 percent of people on opposing teams will give you what they’ve got. That’s how we are. It’s really addictive and always a good time.”
Those interested in participating in the barbecue competitions or the Handcrafted and Homespun Craft Show can register up until the week before Bands and BBQ. Forms can be received by contacting Carrollton-Carroll County Tourism.
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