Being a Pig Never was this Tasty!
Great March weather always makes NOLA festivals even better, and Mother Nature was kind to Hogs for the Cause in their tenth year. Hogs is a charity organization where the "Cause" donates the proceeds from their events mainly to children's hospitals and supporting facilities in the region. They have grown into the largest "pork" festival with multiple musical stages and over 85 teams competing to win the best BBQ creations. Each year, the food booth designs get bigger and more intricate while surrounding some of the best eats in the city. Fanciful drink booths compliment the eateries and Tito's brought out their air stream trailer for their lounge area. Not to be outdone, Jack Daniel's trucked in their semi complete with a mini distillery tour inside the payload area.
Vendors have to reach a minimum of sales in the two day fest to be eligible to return next year which makes them focus on not only the food but other attractions that get people to engage their booths and tap the HOG pay wristbands. Yes, this festival is cutting edge and you load your wristband with dollars for easy pay everywhere. There were some regular gimmicks including the corn hole bean bag toss, oversized Jenga towers and comfortable lounging areas. Some of the more creative vendors added cotton candy, a sandy beach area and even a giant human foosball game for young people although we did discover that there was quite the adult game in the midnight hour Friday night.
The cleverness of the names abounds throughout Hogs as the more creative teams utilize a play on words in their naming including "Silence of the Hams," "Magnum P. I. G. ," "Smokey and the Bacon," "Lard and in Charge," and numerous Swine names like "Swine and Dine." Our local favorites were out there as well including Blue Oak BBQ with their own dunking booth and Frey Meats who were the creators of the sandy beach I mentioned earlier.
Since we took the morning and lunch shift, we could tell that Saturday night was going to be quite the Swine Fest as the line to get into the Festival grounds was far out into the parking lot. We aldo thought heading out early was a good idea to prevent a hospital visit from consuming way too much pork creations. The tenth year certainly looks to continue to push Hogs for the Cause over the top.
Hogs for the Cause