About

About Smokin' on the Rio

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Smokin’ on the Rio State Championship BBQ Cook-Off was established in 2004 by a group of local businessmen with the goal of raising money in support of youth agricultural projects in the Rio Grande Valley. The proceeds generated from the event have been used to purchase student projects at the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show’s Sale of Champions.  Smokin’ on the Rio feels it is very important to promote the involvement of students in the agricultural lifestyle that develops leadership, responsibility, and dedication.  The main goal is to insure that all students in the auction get a fair return on their livestock investment, which in turn will give them the desire to participate again and invite their friends to join them.

Smokin’ on the Rio, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, hosts the annual Smokin’ on the Rio State Championship BBQ Cook-Off in Mercedes, Texas every February.  Our 13th annual event hosted February 26-27, 2016 proved to be the most successful since its inception in 2004. The proceeds of this year’s event provided the Board of Directors the ability to impact the lives of over 200 students participating in the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show through a wide range of 4-H and FFA projects. Our 2015 efforts consisted of contributing $160,000 in scholarships and premium awards this year alone. Smokin’ on the Rio has awarded over $1 million to almost 1200 youth since 2004 and met our goal to exceed the $1 million mark in 2016.

Smokin’ on the Rio currently is proud to have reached a level of success that has made it the largest sanctioned BBQ Cook-off in Texas and the third largest sancioned cookoff in the United States.  Attracting teams from all over the state and country,  Smokin’ on the Rio is held every year during the last weekend of February at the Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show Grounds in Mercedes, Texas.

Smokin' on the Rio

Smokin’ on the Rio State Championship BBQ Cook-Off was established in 2004 by a group of local businessmen with the goal of raising money in support of youth agricultural projects in the Rio Grande Valley.