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Enquirer file photo/Rebekah Martin Kayla and Kyle Mitchell enjoy barbecue during the 9th Annual Cotton Pickin’ BBQ Cook-off last year.

Tenth annual BBQ cook-off slated for July 26-27

The Tenth Annual Cotton Pickin’ BBQ Cook-off is slated for July 26-27. The Hartselle Area Chamber of Commerce event will take place at Sparkman Park in Hartselle and bring together various vendors, competitors and entertainment for a community wide event. 

Grant McKelvey is the Chair of the Board for the Chamber and said the event this year will be bringing additional community elements. He said there will be more vendors and food trucks at the event this year as well as two music performances. With the purchase of a $10 armband attendees also gain access to the Hartselle Aquatic Center and have the chance to sample barbecue for a People’s Choice Award. 

“I think it will be a really good time for people to come out and enjoy a Friday evening where we have entertainment then Saturday we have multiple vendors and entertainment. This year we will be able to sample barbecue so it will be a really good time,” McKelvey said. 

The Lamont Landers Band and Bishop Black will begin performances at 6 p.m. Friday during the event. According to McKelvey, there will also be a larger number of competitors that are taking part in the event. “We have as many teams in this competition as what Riverfest has been having so it is going to be a similar size. The cook-off is a Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned event. We have more food trucks than what we had last year, and we have a lot more vendors,” McKelvey said. 

All money raised from the event is used to invest back into the business community in the Hartselle area. “We want it to be a benefit for the community. Whatever we make goes back to  help grow the business community. This is plugged back in the community,” McKelvey said. 

Interested parties can contact the Hartselle Area Chamber of Commerce to purchase the armbands for the weekend. Competitor registration is also open throughout most of July. Interested parties can obtain a registration form by visiting the Chamber website at

“This is not just a chamber event. We have several sponsors that help make this event possible. It is because of the support that we have through our city and through Parks and Recreation and other city departments that allow us to put this on. It is going to be a great time. I just want to encourage everyone to come out and enjoy,” McKelvey said.