January through March is BBQ Festival Season in Polk County! These barbecue competitions bring the best teams from all over Florida and even some from out of state. While they compete for prizes, we get to enjoy the mouth watering BBQ at these family friendly events.

You’ll find an assortment of ribs, pulled pork, beef brisket, chicken, sides, desserts, and more. In addition to good eats, you’ll also find live entertainment, kids activities, and plenty of other treats to keep everyone happy. Plus, all of these events raise funds for non-profits in our community!

Lakeland PigFest, Smoke on the Water in Winter Haven, and Ribs on the Ridge in Haines City are all annual local favorites – details below.

Lakeland Pigfest 2020
Friday, January 24 – 5pm-10pm
Saturday, January 25 – 10am-5pm

Lakeland Pigfest

Pigfest Lakeland
January 24 @ 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm
SUN ‘n FUN Campus
4175 Medulla Rd
Lakeland, FL 33811 US
Google Map

Join the Lakeland Pigfest Board of Directors and the over 150 competition barbecue teams for a weekend of good eatin’, good friends, and good tunes to benefit Lakeland-area charities as we kick off the Annual Lakeland Pigfest! Located at the SUN n' FUN Campus.

Admission to Lakeland Pigfest is just $5 and kids 12 years and younger can enter for free. Parking is free. The good eatin’ won’t cost you much and is well worth the value. Stop by a Pig Bucks booth (located near the entrance and various locations throughout) and exchange your cash for Pig Bucks, the official currency of the Lakeland Pigfest. By purchasing food from competition teams, you are supporting their efforts and local charities.

Lake Alfred Bluegrass & Kickin’ Chickin’ Wing Competition

Lake Alfred Bluegrass & Kickin’ Chickin’ Wing Competition

January 11 @ 11:00 am - 8:00 pm
Lake Alfred – Lion’s Park
175 N. Nekoma Avenue
Lake Alfred, FL 33850 United States
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The name has changed a little but the music & food will be just as good! This year we will feature a chicken wing contest but don't worry there will be lots of sweet & smokey BBQ as well. Come out for a great day of music and food on beautiful Lake Alfred, enjoy the beer garden along with all the wings and BBQ you can eat! Entertainment provided by Southern Express, ReKindled Grass, Justin Mason & Blue Night, The Beaumont Family, Duck Wallow Lane, the Clogging Connection and the M&M Cloggers. Admission is free and parking is free.  Don't forget your favorite BBQ teams will be there cooking lots of sweet savory BBQ and competing for cash prizes and trophies! If you would like to compete in the competition or like more info on the event please contact the Parks Department at 863-291-5272. This event is held every year at Lions Park on the lake shore of beautiful Lake Alfred and remember to bring your own lawn chair!

Smoke on the Water – Winter Haven
Friday, February 7 – 6:00-10:00pm
Saturday, February 8 – 10:00am – 6:oopm

Smoke on the Water BBQ Competition

February 7 @ 6:00 pm
Citrus Center Boys & Girls Clubs
2400 Havendale Blvd. NW
Winter Haven, FL 33881 United States
Google Map

The Annual Smoke on the Water BBQ Competition is hosted each February and is a Florida BBQ Association State Championship. Funds raised benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Polk County. More than 80 teams from across the country will compete for the Florida State Grand Champion title. Unique entertainment includes; a Music Festival, an aerial flyover, and awards for the best chicken, ribs, pork, and brisket, which will be announced at 5:30 p.m on Saturday. Start the party early and come for BBQ on Friday, February 7th at 6:00pm. The official festivities kick off at 10:00 am on Saturday, February 8th with the national anthem. Funds raised will benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of Polk County. Friday Night Festivities featuring a sneak peak at the BBQ vendors begin Friday, February 7 at 6 pm and are open to all (Friday entry – $10). Saturday Night Join us for the big BBQ competition and music on Saturday, February 8 from 10 am – 6 pm (Saturday entry – $1 donation).

Grills Gone Wild
Friday, February 14 – 5pm-10pm
Saturday, February 15 – 10am-5pm

Grills Gone Wild BBQ Event

February 14 @ 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Davenport – Market Street
Market Street
Davenport, FL 33837 United States
Google Map

Friday February 14th from 5 pm to 9 pm Saturday February 15th from 10 am to 5 pm Market Street, Davenport, FL 33836 This event is sanctioned by the Florida BBQ Association Please check out our website at www.mydavenport.org for more info and applications

Ribs on the Ridge – Haines City
Friday, February 22 – 5:00 – 9:00pm
Saturday, February 23 – 10:00am – 5:oopm

Ribs on the Ridge in Haines City

February 21 @ 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Haines City – Lake Eva Park
555 Ledwith Ave
Haines City, FL 33844 US
Google Map

Ribs on the Ridge is where the sweet smells of barbecue fills the air and pit masters fire up platters of goodness. This two day sanctioned event through the Florida BBQ Association will bring professional and backyard teams from across Florida and other states to compete for cash prizes, trophies, and bragging rights to the best BBQ in town.  Attendees of Ribs on the Ridge can expect to over-indulge in tasting endless varieties of BBQ, live entertainment, food vendors, beer and wine, and much more! Admission is free. Whether you are a backyard cook, a professional cook, or would just like to enjoy good barbecue, Ribs on the Ridge is an event you do not want to miss! Event Dates: February 21, 2020 | 5:00 - 9:00 PM February 22. 2020 | 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Other Upcoming Food & Drink Events

Lakeland Pancake Festival – Flipping for Charities

Lakeland Pancake Festival – Flipping for Charities

February 8 @ 7:00 am - 3:00 pm
Tigertown at Joker Marchant Stadium
2220 N Lake Ave
Lakeland, FL 33805 US
Google Map

"Flipping for Charities", the 61st Annual Kiwanis Pancake Festival will be held Saturday, February 8, 2020 inside Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. Please join us for delicious pancakes and sausage as well as coffee and juice and a variety of entertainment.  "Flipping for Charities" has raised millions of dollars that have been distributed to various local charities having a direct impact on the children of our community!! Please join us for delicious pancakes and sausage as well as coffee and juice and a variety of entertainment.  "Flipping for Charities" has raised millions of dollars that have been distributed to various local charities having a direct impact on the children of our community!! Family Pack: $20 (2 Adults/2 Children) Adults: $8 Children: $4 (ages 2-12) *Children’s tickets include moonwalk activities and a milk ticket.

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There are no upcoming events at this time.
Lakeland Summer Activities for Kids

Be sure to check out our Spring Activity Guide for Spring Break Camps, Spring Break activities, tips for attending Sun ‘n Fun & Mayfaire, details on Lakeland’s favorite annual Spring events, and more.