5 Things to Know Before Heading to The Jack

The air smells like sour mash and wood smoke again here in Lynchburg. It’s here. It’s finally here. The 2021 Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue kicks off today in Lynchburg. All of us want you to have an amazing time, and that includes giving you all the information you need to have a fun, safe experience in Lynchburg. Here are a couple things to keep in mind as you head to the Holler:

1| It has rained all week and things are muddy. Barbecue weekend and rain go together like peanut butter and jelly much to the chagrin of the event staff. Organizers even moved the event date up this year to avoid the rain but nope, it still rained several inches the first couple days of this week. The Jack crew brought in truck load after truck load of mulch and gravel to help dry things out but the event footprint may still be muddy in places. Dress accordingly.

Public parking with free shuttle service to the event is available at Moore County High School a little over a mile from the distillery. (A Lynchburg Times Photo)

2 | Don’t park in people’s yard or on the shoulder of the road. The folks here in Lynchburg are known worldwide for their hospitality but neither locals nor law enforcement really have any sense of humor about those attempting to eek by with a dangerous free spot. We’ve also experienced several inches of rain this week and turning someone’s yard into mud pit is just plain rude. Good news though, parking with shuttle service will be available at Moore County High School for just $10.

3 | Yes, there is an open container law in Lynchburg. This year’s event will be little different than year’s past. In 2021, the folks at the distillery went before the Metro Council and purchased a festival permit that allows them to serve their Country Cocktails inside a certain area in the event footprint. This means that those of legal drinking age can purchase Country Cocktails at the festival and drink it near the tent but walking and drinking from an open container beyond that is a no no. Metro Moore County does have an Open Container Law and it will be enforced this weekend, according to Metro Sheriff Tyler Hatfield. Break it and you might go home with an over $200 fine.

4 | Turn in times are serious. Beginning a little before noon on Saturday and extending until the final turn in around 2 p.m., you’ll notice the energy in Lynchburg take a tense turn. “On your left” … “coming through” … if you hear these words being shouted from behind you on Saturday, don’t be alarmed but it’s best to just stand still and yield to the likely trio of barbecue team members coming in hot.

The Jack is a Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) sanctioned event and considered by many to be the world’s most prestigious barbecue competition. The competition is stiff and rules unbending. Teams compete in seven categories – Pork Ribs, Pork Shoulder/Butts, Beef Brisket, Chicken, Dessert, Cook’s Choice, and Jack Daniel’s Sauce. Boxes must be turned in pristine shape and they must be turned in on time. Each table includes six certified judges and once the table captain opens the box, it gets passed around the table for blind judging. And trust us, you do not want them to see a messy box with jumbled meat everywhere. That’s why it’s so important to give teams a wide berth at turn in times.

Don’t worry … things get real loose after judging finishes around 3 p.m.

Stay tuned to our Facebook page throughout the weekend for coverage and updates. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently owned and operated newspaper that publishes new stories every morning. Covering Metro Moore County government, Jack Daniel’s Distillery, Nearest Green Distillery, Tims Ford State Park, Motlow State Community College, Moore County High School, Moore County Middle School, Lynchburg Elementary, Raider Sports, plus regional and state news.}