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God is Festival's most essential ingredient

The recipe for the Broyhill Home “Cookin’ for the Kids” Barbecue Festival is one of success. The annual event, which brings together teams who cook their special pork, chicken and beef brisket secret recipes, marked its tenth anniversary on May 13.

However, the most important ingredient to the festival’s longevity is no secret to members of Ninevah Baptist Church in Waynesville who organize the annual fundraiser. From the beginning, they put God at the center of the event.

“I was taught to learn what gifts God has given you and then use them,” says Mike Leslie, pastor at Ninevah. “One of our church’s skills is cooking, and we enjoy doing it.”

The festival benefits Broyhill Home, Baptist Children’s Homes’ (BCH) campus in the mountains near Clyde. It is held on the Broyhill Home grounds inviting the community to see the ministry up close. It was inspired by Ninevah church member Larry Inman who approached Leslie about the idea.

“We wanted an event that would bring churches and others to Broyhill,” Leslie explains. “We felt like if they came it would encourage them to be more involved year round.”

That involvement at the festival has extended beyond the barbecue cook off. The event has a car/truck/motorcycle show, 3-D bow shoot, live Gospel musicians, and a variety of vendors.

The festival is unique in that it is one of the few BCH events that is entirely volunteer driven. Church volunteers and event sponsors make the annual festival possible.