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Pork Barbecue Pros Battle This Weekend

This weekend is all about pork, and anything else that can be slathered in barbecue sauce, as barbecue teams and restaurants from across the country descend on the nation’s capital to vie for the title of National Pork Barbecue champion.

The 12th annual Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle, declared the official national pork championship by the National Pork Board, will take place Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. between Ninth and 14th streets Northwest on Pennsylvania Avenue. The event will feature an array of food choices such as ribs, pulled pork, chicken and beef brisket. There also will be cooking demonstrations, special events, celebrity chefs and a Safeway Sampling Pavilion, which is open from noon to 6 p.m. each day.

The weekend offers $25,000 in cash and prizes to teams competing in the contests in the following categories: pork, beef and chicken on Saturday and whole hog, pork shoulder and pork rib on Sunday. Teams will cook off Saturday in the D.C. Lottery’s Barbecue Challenge Contest. The National Pork Barbecue Championship will be on Sunday. Also, four $1,000 prizes will be awarded for the Nation’s Best Barbecue Sauce.

The two-day event will host more than 30 bands on three stages, featuring a variety of rock, blues, jazz and reggae music.

Admission to the barbecue battle, which will take place rain or shine, is $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 6-12. Children age 5 and under are admitted for free. Part of the admission proceeds go to the Metropolitan Police Boys and Girls Clubs and D.C. Doubledutch.

For more information, call (301) 860-0630 or log on to https://www.barbecuebattle.com.

— Jennifer Lash

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