On Saturday, September 28th, thousands of folks will stroll around downtown Marlinton for one of the south’s most well-known and wild cooking competitions called the West Virginia Roadkill Cook-off. This event is held during the Autumn Harvest Festival and chefs works hard to come up with wildly delicious dishes that stand out from the rest. The competition requires them to go wild by cooking animals that are often struck by our vehicles such as deer, rabbit, bear, iguana, possum, etc. Last year, the Coal Hollow Brothers won the cook-off’s Showmanship Award. Their dish was Solomon A Gundy (pirate stew) with alligator. The fourth-place winner was the Youth Health Service Hillbillies with a dish called Predator Prey Chile w/ Fixins. First place was an Autumn Venison prepared by Wild Side Cuisine. Some other dishes included Venison Cabbage Soup, Drunken Deer in Headlights, Fender Fried Faun smothered in Vulture Vomit, and Mardi Gras Alligator/Turtle Gumbo.
Over the years, this cook-off has been covered by major news outlets such as CNN, Travel Channel, and Discovery Channel. Programs like All-American Festivals, Fest Quest, and the Today Show have all done segments.
This year’s festivities begin Friday night with a square dance. All-day Saturday, the streets will be filled with chefs, foodies, over 70 vendors with handmade arts and crafts, all-day mountain heritage music, a 5k, and the Hudson Cream Biscuit Bake-off.
Friday night’s Rockin’ Redneck Square Dance is held at the Pocahontas Opera House in town from 7p to 9pm. This event is hosted by MudHole Control and The Bing Brothers with Jake Krack—Caller, Mack Samples.
Saturday kicks-off with High Rocks’ Possum Trot 5k run/walk, starting at 10am. Registration is from 8-9a. Participants will meet at the Depot beside the Greenbrier River Trail. “Last year we had over 60 racers at the ‘Possum Trot and we hope to see them all again! The Greenbrier River Trail in Marlinton is a great place to run in the Fall, and we look forward to seeing folks on the 28th!” – Sarah Mansheim, High Rocks Educational Corporation Development and Marketing Manager.
Enjoy music at the gazebo with Mud Hole Control, 10a-11:30a; Juanita Fireball & the Continental Drifters, 11:30a-1p; Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys, 1p-2:30pm; and the Bing Brothers and Jake Krack, 2:30p-4pm.
If you have ever wanted to taste exotic dishes like squirrel gravy over biscuits, teriyaki marinated bear or deer sausage, this is the place to be! For more information, visit pccocwv.com/wv-roadkill-cook-off.