American Royal World Series of Barbecue returning in fall of 2021


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The world’s largest barbecue competition is returning to Kansas City in September 2021.

The annual barbecue competition was canceled in 2020 due to concerns involving the COVID-19 pandemic.

From September 16 to September 19, the Kansas Speedway will host the best barbecue competitors from around the world for the 41st time.

“The World Series of Barbecue is often referred to as the ‘family reunion’ of competitive barbecue,” Glen Alan Phillips, President and CEO of the American Royal, said. “It’s the one time during the year where all of the competitors, from the elites to the amateurs, get together in one space to fire up hundreds of smokers – and have a great time in the process.”

The American Royal will be working with the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and state health officials to create and follow guidelines to keep guests, competitors and staff safe.

Attendance levels and single-entry tickets will be available at a later date based on recommendations from health officials.

Health and safety is our top priority. At this time, we anticipate a contest similar to previous years, with modifications to ensure safety. We will continue to monitor the situation and provide contest updates, and safety requirements and/or suggestions via our social media accounts, website, and targeted emails throughout the planning process.

American Royal website

Team registration, festival and competition information will be available and updated online.

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