Turkey Smoke is back in 2024 and expands from Coast-to-Coast


Team Turkey Smoke

The National Turkey Federation (NTF) is pleased to renew its partnership with the Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS), kicking off the fifth year of the Turkey Smoke Series, which encourages both professional and amateur pitmasters to showcase the versatility and creativity of turkey on the smoker or grill. The Turkey Smoke Series features a turkey category in select barbeque competitions across the United States during the 2024 season. Pitmasters and contest organizers love that the Turkey Smoke Series adds thousands of dollars in extra prize money, trophies, and bragging rights at KCBS-sanctioned events, and Certified Barbeque Judges appreciate the opportunity to judge another delicious category! Winning recipes will be featured across KCBS and NTF digital platforms.

In addition to the Turkey Smoke Series, NTF and KCBS are pleased to announce the return of the Turkey Smoke Team of the Year (TOY) award, the grand championship for the series. Turkey Smoke competitors can collect points at the 2024 KCBS-sanctioned Turkey Smoke Series events, with the team’s five best scores contributing to the overall points chase. The team with the most points at the end of the series ultimately walks away with the 2024 TOY award. During the annual KCBS Awards Banquet in Kansas City, KCBS and NTF crowned Piggin’ Whiskey, based in Hot Springs, Arkansas, as the 2023 Turkey Smoke Team of the Year!

“KCBS is thrilled to celebrate the fifth year of the partnership with the National Turkey Federation which brings the popular Turkey Smoke category to 16 states,” said Rod Gray, Chief Executive Office of the Kansas City Barbeque Society.

“Turkey has been an integral part of competition barbeque for the last five years. Turkey Smoke series presents a challenge to our competitors and allows KCBS pitmasters to expand their talents and inspires creativity with one of America’s favorite proteins. The Turkey Smoke series is highly competitive, and teams get creative and strategize all season to be crowned the Turkey Smoke Team of the Year. Not only is this category a favorite among pitmasters, but Certified Barbeque Judges and organizers alike also continue to express their enthusiasm for Turkey Smoke.”

“NTF is proud to once again partner with KCBS and continue to bring Turkey Smoke to competitions across the country this year,” said Leslee Oden, Sr. Vice President of Legislative Affairs for the National Turkey Federation. “The return of the Turkey Smoke Series and the Team of the Year award is a sign that everyone from the pit to the judge’s tent is excited about turkey and sees just how naturally it fits into competition barbecue. We can’t wait for the creative and top-notch turn-ins the teams will bring to the table this year.” 

As part of the Turkey Smoke Series, Turkey Smoke will be integrated into 20 competitions across the country, including the category’s seventh appearance at the American Royal World Series of Barbecue™. To learn more about the Turkey Smoke Series and to check for updates on scheduled events and dates, please visit www.kcbs.us/turkey.php or TurkeySmoke.org.

2024 Turkey Smoke Schedule

March 15Smoke on the ShoresLebanon, TN
March 22-24BBQ Gives BackUrbanna, VA
April 5-6Smoke in the SpringOsage City, KS
April 27Lodi BeerFest & State BBQ ChampionshipLodi, CA
April 27Smoke on the Water BBQ FestivalFlorence, AL
May 11Minnesota In MaySt. Peter, MN
May 17King of the CornOttumwa, IA
May 24-26KCBS World InvitationalLebanon, TN 
June 7Original South Dakota BBQ ChampionshipHuron, SD
June 8Hoosier BBQ ClassicFranklin, IN
June 14-15Almost Heaven BBQ BashBuckhannon, WV
June 22Giant National Capital Barbecue BattleWashington, DC
July 12Smokin’ Gobbler Cook-OffWorthington, MN
July 19Buckeye BBQ ClassicHillsboro, OH
July 27Smoke on the Rail BBQ FestivalNew Freedom, PA
August 17BBQ & Fly-In On the RiverExcelsior Springs, MO
October 20Red White & QueJackson, NJ
October 25Zom-B-QGalax, VA
October 26BOO-B-QUE BBQ ChampionshipOak Grove, MO