On Sept. 30, let your appetite go hog wild when the fourth annual Whole Hawg Happenin’ BBQ & Music Fest takes place for the first time on the Marietta Square from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Barbecue lovers will enjoy tasty bites as some of Atlanta’s best barbecue restaurants — including Rib Ranch, Sam’s BBQ 1, Williamson Bros. and Dave Poe’s — serve up specialties such as whole hog, brisket, baby back ribs and pulled pork.
“It’s like Taste of Marietta, but its barbecue-related,” said festival coordinator Maryclaire Andres, owner of Promo-Photo. The original location for the festival was in the Six Flags White Water parking lot.
“We are excited that we are moving to the Marietta Square with this event,” said Jamie Vann who, along with Sam Kelly, were board members of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Cobb County when the nonprofit started the festival in 2008.
“The next thing we know, this idea had become a huge barbecue festival and the whole community became involved. It has been amazing to see how it has all transformed from a basic idea to what it is today,” he said.
New this year is a barbecue contest with judging and prize money. Blues and other musical entertainment on the two entertainment stages include Men in Blues, Hurricane Wilson, Hoosier Daddy, Banks and Shane and others. Andres said, “There is something for everyone to enjoy.”
In addition to the BBQ restaurants, this family friendly celebration will have a Kids Corner and Sports Zone with the Atlanta Braves and the Atlanta Hawks. There will be a Classic Cruise in Car Show on display, along with arts and crafts and the barbecue competition area.
In addition to the Boys & Girls Clubs, the event benefits the Marietta/Cobb Museum of Art, Earl Smith Strand Theatre, Marietta Museum of History and Marietta’s Gone with the Wind Museum. “It’s a good community event that benefits all these great charities. It’s just a fun time to come out and enjoy the first true barbecue event on the Marietta Square,” Andres said. “I see (Whole Hawg Happenin’) being something that’s going to grow and grow and grow,” she said. For more information, www.wholehawgbbqfest.com.