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Virginia Pork Festival Event Guide


Modified: January 3, 2024

by Raquel Halpern



Welcome to the Virginia Pork Festival, a celebration of all things pork! Whether you’re a BBQ aficionado, a lover of Southern cuisine, or simply someone who enjoys a good food festival, this event promises to be a feast for the senses.


The Virginia Pork Festival has a rich history, dating back several decades. It has become a beloved tradition for both locals and visitors from far and wide. With its mouthwatering food offerings, lively entertainment, and vibrant atmosphere, the festival truly captures the essence of Southern hospitality and culinary delights.


At the Virginia Pork Festival, you’ll have the chance to savor a wide variety of pork dishes prepared by local chefs and pitmasters. From tender pulled pork sandwiches to succulent ribs, there’s something to satisfy every pork lover’s cravings. And let’s not forget the delectable sides and desserts that perfectly complement the star of the show – the pork itself.


But the festival is not just about the food. It’s also a celebration of Virginia’s rich cultural heritage. As you wander through the festival grounds, you’ll be immersed in a lively atmosphere filled with the sounds of live music, the laughter of families and friends, and the aromas of delicious food wafting through the air.


As you indulge in the gastronomic delights, you’ll also have the opportunity to partake in various fun-filled activities. From carnival rides and games to craft vendors and cooking demonstrations, there’s no shortage of things to see and do at the Virginia Pork Festival.


So, get ready to experience a true culinary extravaganza that showcases the best of Virginia’s pork industry and delights food enthusiasts from near and far. Join us at the Virginia Pork Festival for a day of tantalizing flavors, memorable experiences, and Southern hospitality at its finest.


History of the Virginia Pork Festival

The Virginia Pork Festival traces its roots back to the late 1970s when a group of local farmers and pork enthusiasts came together with the idea of showcasing Virginia’s thriving pork industry. What started as a small community gathering soon grew into a much-anticipated annual event that showcases the best of Virginia’s pork and Southern hospitality.


Over the years, the Virginia Pork Festival has become a beloved tradition, attracting thousands of visitors from across the state and beyond. It has earned a reputation as one of the region’s premier food festivals, known for its mouthwatering pork dishes, lively entertainment, and festive atmosphere.


Throughout its history, the festival has evolved and expanded, but its core mission remains the same – to celebrate the rich heritage and flavors of Virginia’s pork industry. Local farmers, chefs, and vendors come together to showcase their culinary skills and offer a wide range of delicious pork-based dishes.


One of the festival’s main highlights is the famous pork cook-off competition. Local chefs and pitmasters go head-to-head, showcasing their talent and creativity in preparing the most flavorful and succulent pork dishes. This cook-off has become a highly anticipated event, drawing crowds of food enthusiasts eager to taste the best that Virginia has to offer.


Though the festival primarily focuses on pork, it also aims to educate attendees about sustainable farming practices, animal welfare, and the importance of supporting local agriculture. Guests will have the opportunity to learn from experts in the field and gain a deeper appreciation for the hard work and dedication that goes into producing high-quality pork.


Throughout its many years, the Virginia Pork Festival has become more than just a food event – it’s a celebration of community, culture, and the shared love of good food. Families and friends come together to enjoy the festivities, creating lasting memories and fostering a sense of camaraderie.


As the festival continues to grow and evolve, it remains deeply rooted in Virginia’s agricultural heritage and its longstanding tradition of producing exceptional pork products. It serves as a testament to the hard work and dedication of the farmers and industry professionals who make Virginia’s pork industry thrive.


Join us at the Virginia Pork Festival as we celebrate this rich history and indulge in the flavors and traditions that have made pork a staple of Southern cuisine.


Location and Date

The Virginia Pork Festival takes place in the picturesque town of Emporia, nestled in the heart of Virginia. Known for its charming small-town atmosphere and historic buildings, Emporia provides the perfect backdrop for a day of culinary festivities.


The festival grounds are located at the Emporia-Greensville County Airport, conveniently situated just off the main highway. The spacious venue offers ample parking and easy access for visitors coming from all directions.


This year, the Virginia Pork Festival will be held on [date]. Mark your calendars and get ready to embark on a pork-filled adventure that will leave your taste buds satisfied and your heart full of Southern hospitality.


With its central location in the state, the festival is easily accessible for both local residents and out-of-town visitors. Whether you’re coming from nearby cities or making a road trip from a neighboring state, you’ll find that the Virginia Pork Festival is well worth the journey.


As you explore the festival grounds, you’ll be surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, adding to the overall ambience of the event. The spacious outdoor venue allows guests to enjoy the festivities in a comfortable and relaxed setting.


So mark your calendar, gather your friends and family, and head to Emporia for an unforgettable day of pork-filled fun at the Virginia Pork Festival.


Festival Highlights

The Virginia Pork Festival is packed with exciting highlights that are sure to delight and entertain attendees of all ages. From mouthwatering food offerings to lively entertainment, here are some of the festival’s standout features:

  • Pork Extravaganza: Indulge in a wide array of pork dishes prepared by talented local chefs and pitmasters. From slow-smoked ribs to succulent pulled pork sandwiches, there’s a pork delicacy to satisfy every craving.
  • Cook-Off Competition: Witness the culinary battle as talented chefs and pitmasters compete for the title of “Best Pork Dish.” The cook-off promises fierce competition and creative culinary creations.
  • Live Music: Get your feet tapping and your hips swaying to the energetic sounds of live bands and musicians. From country to blues, the festival offers a diverse musical lineup to keep the atmosphere lively and entertaining.
  • Craft and Artisan Vendors: Explore the vendor area where local artisans showcase their crafts and products. From handmade jewelry to unique home decor items, there’s something for everyone to discover.
  • Kids’ Zone: Keep the little ones entertained with a dedicated kids’ zone that offers a variety of activities, including carnival rides, face painting, and games. Families can enjoy a fun-filled day together, making memories that will last a lifetime.
  • Cooking Demonstrations: Learn from expert chefs as they showcase their culinary skills and share their tips and techniques for preparing delicious pork dishes. You’ll leave inspired and ready to take your own cooking to the next level.
  • Beer and Wine Garden: Take a break from the festivities and relax in the beer and wine garden, where you can sample a selection of local craft beers and wines. Raise a glass to the delicious flavors of Virginia while enjoying the vibrant festival atmosphere.
  • Community Spirit: The Virginia Pork Festival also provides an opportunity to connect with the local community. Meet the farmers, chefs, and vendors who are passionate about their craft and learn about Virginia’s agricultural heritage.

With its diverse offerings and vibrant atmosphere, the Virginia Pork Festival promises a day filled with food, fun, and entertainment for the whole family. It’s an event that celebrates the best of Virginia’s pork industry and showcases the region’s rich culture and culinary traditions.


Food and Drink Offerings

Prepare your taste buds for a mouthwatering culinary adventure at the Virginia Pork Festival. This gastronomic extravaganza showcases an impressive array of food and drink offerings that are sure to satisfy even the most discerning palates.


The star of the show, of course, is the pork. From classic BBQ to innovative culinary creations, you’ll find a wide variety of pork dishes that will leave you craving for more. Sink your teeth into tender pulled pork sandwiches, savor succulent ribs dripping with smoky goodness, or opt for a plate of juicy pork chops.


But the festival has more than just pork. You’ll also find an assortment of delicious sides and accompaniments to complement your pork feast. From savory baked beans and creamy macaroni and cheese to tangy coleslaw and fluffy cornbread, the options are endless.


If you’re craving something sweet, the festival has got you covered. Indulge in delectable desserts like warm apple pie, homemade cobblers, or a classic Southern favorite – banana pudding. Wash it all down with a refreshing glass of iced tea, lemonade, or a cold craft beer from the beer garden.


While pork takes center stage, the festival also caters to various dietary preferences and restrictions. Vegetarian and vegan options are available, ensuring that everyone can enjoy the festivities and find something delicious to savor.


As you wander through the food vendor area, you’ll be greeted by the tantalizing aromas of slow-cooked meats and spices. The vendors, many of whom are local farmers and chefs, take pride in preparing their dishes with the highest quality ingredients. They are always eager to share their expertise and passion for food, making your culinary experience even more memorable.


Make sure to come hungry and be prepared to indulge in the diverse and mouthwatering food offerings at the Virginia Pork Festival. Treat your taste buds to a culinary journey that’s filled with the rich flavors and traditions that make Virginia’s cuisine truly special.


Entertainment and Activities

The Virginia Pork Festival is not just about tantalizing your taste buds – it’s also a lively event filled with entertainment and activities for attendees of all ages. From live music to interactive experiences, there’s something to keep everyone entertained throughout the day.


One of the festival’s highlights is the lineup of live bands and musicians who take the stage, filling the air with toe-tapping beats and captivating melodies. From country and bluegrass to rock and blues, the musical performances add a vibrant soundtrack to the festivities and create a lively atmosphere for all to enjoy.


If you’re looking to learn a thing or two about cooking or simply want to be inspired by culinary creativity, the festival offers cooking demonstrations by expert chefs. Watch as they showcase their skills, share insider tips and tricks, and teach you how to create mouthwatering pork dishes in your own kitchen.


The Virginia Pork Festival also caters to the younger crowd with a dedicated Kids’ Zone. Here, children can enjoy a range of activities, including face painting, carnival rides, and interactive games. It’s the perfect place for families to spend quality time together while the little ones have a blast.


For those who appreciate handmade crafts and unique artisan products, the festival features a variety of vendors. Explore the vendor area where you’ll find everything from handmade jewelry and pottery to local artwork and home decor items. It’s the ideal opportunity to support local artisans and take home a special memento from the event.


As you stroll through the festival grounds, you’ll encounter various entertainment options, such as roaming performers, magicians, and street artists. These talented individuals add an extra layer of excitement and fun to the event, ensuring that there’s always something new and exciting around every corner.


For sports enthusiasts, there may even be friendly games and competitions taking place, where you can showcase your skills or cheer on your favorite team. It’s a chance to foster a sense of friendly competition and camaraderie among attendees.


Whether you’re dancing to live music, engaging in interactive activities, or simply soaking in the vibrant atmosphere, the entertainment and activities at the Virginia Pork Festival create a memorable experience for everyone.


So come prepared to eat, dance, explore, and create unforgettable memories at this lively event that celebrates pork, community, and Southern hospitality.


Ticket Information

Attending the Virginia Pork Festival is an experience you won’t want to miss, and getting your tickets is easy. Here’s what you need to know about ticket prices, purchasing options, and more:


General Admission: General admission tickets are available for purchase both in advance and at the gate on the day of the event. Prices for general admission typically range from $X to $X per person, with discounted rates available for children and seniors. Keep in mind that ticket prices may vary from year to year, so it’s best to check the official festival website for the most up-to-date information.


Group Rates: If you’re planning to attend the Virginia Pork Festival with a large group, you may be eligible for group rates. Whether you’re organizing a family outing or a corporate event, group rates offer a cost-effective way to enjoy the festival with your loved ones or colleagues. Contact the festival organizers directly to inquire about group rates and any additional perks that may be available.


Additional Purchasing Options: In addition to general admission, the festival may offer other ticketing options for specific experiences or access to exclusive areas. This could include VIP packages with special amenities, fast-track entry, or reserved seating. Be sure to check the festival website or reach out to the organizers for details on any additional ticketing options that may be available.


Online Purchasing: To secure your tickets in advance and ensure a smooth entry into the festival, consider purchasing your tickets online. The festival’s official website typically provides a secure and convenient online ticketing platform. Keep in mind that online ticket sales may have limited quantities or specific cut-off dates, so it’s advisable to purchase your tickets as early as possible to avoid disappointment.


Gate Sales: If you prefer to purchase your tickets on the day of the festival, gate sales are typically available. However, it’s important to note that popular events like the Virginia Pork Festival can attract large crowds, and there’s a possibility that tickets may sell out at the gate. Arriving early in the day is recommended to secure your admission and make the most of your festival experience.


Refunds and Exchanges: Before purchasing your tickets, be sure to review the festival’s refund and exchange policy. While some events may offer refunds or allow ticket transfers, others may have strict no-refund policies. Understanding the terms and conditions in advance will help you make an informed decision and avoid any potential disappointment.


Remember to check the official Virginia Pork Festival website or reach out to the festival organizers for the most accurate and up-to-date ticket information. Secure your tickets early and get ready to immerse yourself in a day of mouthwatering food, music, and entertainment at the Virginia Pork Festival.


Getting to the Festival

Attending the Virginia Pork Festival is a breeze thanks to its convenient location and easy accessibility. Whether you’re coming from a nearby town or traveling from out of state, here are some transportation options to consider:


By Car: The most common way to reach the festival is by car. Emporia, where the festival takes place, is conveniently located near major highways, making it easily accessible from various cities in Virginia and surrounding states. Simply input the festival’s address into your GPS or navigation app, and follow the directional signs once you get closer to the festival grounds. Ample parking is available near the festival venue, ensuring a hassle-free experience.


Public Transportation: While public transportation options may be limited, there are still a few ways to reach the festival if you don’t have access to a car. Local bus services or regional transportation companies may offer routes that stop near the festival grounds. Additionally, ridesharing platforms like Uber and Lyft may provide transportation services to and from the festival area. Be sure to check local public transportation schedules and ride-sharing availability in advance.


Shuttle Services: Depending on the festival’s organization, there may be shuttle services provided from designated pickup locations. These shuttles can be a convenient option for those who prefer not to drive or navigate traffic. It’s worth checking the festival’s official website or contacting the organizers to see if shuttle services are available and to get detailed information on pickup locations and schedules.


Carpooling: If you’re attending the festival with a group of friends or family, consider carpooling. Not only is carpooling an eco-friendly transportation option, but it also allows you to share the cost of fuel and parking. Coordinate with your companions in advance to determine the best meeting point or arrange a carpooling plan that works for everyone.


Biking or Walking: If you’re staying in the vicinity of the festival or nearby accommodations, biking or walking may be an option. Check the festival’s website or consult a map to determine if there are designated bike lanes or pedestrian-friendly routes that can safely lead you to the festival grounds.


Regardless of which transportation option you choose, it’s always a good idea to plan your route in advance, taking into account any possible traffic or delays. Keep in mind that large festivals like the Virginia Pork Festival can attract a significant number of attendees, so allowing extra time for travel is advisable.


Enjoy the journey to the Virginia Pork Festival and get ready to embark on a day of feasting, fun, and festivities that celebrate the best of Virginia’s pork industry and Southern culture.



If you’re planning to attend the Virginia Pork Festival and need a place to stay, there are several accommodation options available in and around the festival area. Whether you’re looking for a convenient hotel, a cozy bed and breakfast, or a budget-friendly motel, you’ll find something to suit your needs and preferences.


Many attendees choose to stay in hotels located within a short distance of the festival grounds. These hotels offer comfortable rooms, convenient amenities, and easy access to the festival. Booking a hotel in advance is highly recommended, as rooms can fill up quickly during the festival weekend. Be sure to check if the hotel offers any special packages or discounts for festival attendees.


If you prefer a more intimate and charming atmosphere, consider staying at a local bed and breakfast. These cozy establishments often provide personalized service, unique accommodations, and a home-like ambiance. They can be a great choice for travelers who appreciate the personal touch and want to experience the local hospitality.


For those on a budget, motels and economy accommodations can be a practical choice. There are several options in the area that offer comfortable rooms at affordable rates. While they may not have the luxury amenities of higher-end establishments, they provide a convenient place to rest and refresh during your festival visit.


Additionally, if you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you may wish to explore nearby campgrounds or RV parks. These options allow you to immerse yourself in nature while enjoying the festival. Just make sure to check the availability and amenities offered by the specific campground or RV park you’re considering.


When planning your accommodation, consider factors such as proximity to the festival grounds, availability of transportation, and the overall comfort and amenities that are important to you. It’s also a good idea to book your accommodations well in advance to secure your preferred choice and ensure a stress-free stay during the festival weekend.


Whether you choose a hotel, a bed and breakfast, a motel, or a campground, the hospitality of the local community will make you feel right at home. Take the time to relax, recharge, and enjoy the festival to the fullest by finding the perfect accommodation that suits your needs.


Plan ahead, book early, and get ready for a memorable experience at the Virginia Pork Festival!


Tips for Enjoying the Festival

The Virginia Pork Festival promises a day of delicious food, lively entertainment, and unforgettable experiences. To make the most of your time at the festival, here are some tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience:

  • Arrive Early: To beat the crowds and have ample time to explore all that the festival has to offer, consider arriving early. This will give you the opportunity to secure parking, avoid long lines, and have more time to savor the mouthwatering food and participate in activities.
  • Dress Comfortably: The festival takes place outdoors, so be sure to dress appropriately for the weather. Opt for comfortable shoes, as you’ll be doing a fair amount of walking. Consider wearing a hat and applying sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun’s rays.
  • Cash and Cards: While many vendors may accept credit cards, it’s always a good idea to have some cash on hand. Some food stalls or smaller vendors may only accept cash, so having some bills in your wallet can save you from disappointment. Additionally, consider bringing a small bag or wallet to keep your belongings secure.
  • Plan Your Food Experience: With so many tempting food options, it can be overwhelming to decide what to try. Take a moment to explore the food vendors and their offerings, then create a game plan of the dishes you don’t want to miss. Split dishes with friends or family to sample more varieties.
  • Stay Hydrated: Given the excitement and the delicious food, it’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day. Drink plenty of water to keep yourself refreshed and energized. Consider bringing a refillable water bottle to fill up at water stations throughout the festival grounds.
  • Explore Beyond Food: While the food is undoubtedly a highlight, don’t forget to explore other aspects of the festival. Enjoy the live music performances, check out the craft vendors, participate in cooking demonstrations, and take advantage of any interactive activities available. Immerse yourself fully in the festival experience.
  • Follow Festival Etiquette: Respect the festival rules and the people around you. Be mindful of where you dispose of trash, follow the designated paths, and be courteous to fellow attendees. Remember that everyone is there to enjoy themselves, so let’s create a positive and pleasant environment for all.
  • Create a Meeting Point: If you’re attending the festival with a group, it can be easy to get separated in the hustle and bustle. Plan a designated meeting point where everyone can regroup if they happen to wander off. This will help ensure that everyone can enjoy the festival together.
  • Capture Memories: Bring a camera or smartphone to capture the moments and memories of the Virginia Pork Festival. Whether it’s a group photo, a snapshot of a delicious dish, or a candid moment, photographs will allow you to relive the festival experience long after the event ends.

By following these tips, you’ll be well-prepared to make the most of your time at the Virginia Pork Festival. Remember to embrace the Southern hospitality, indulge in the flavors, and create lasting memories amidst the festive atmosphere. Enjoy every moment!


Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions that may help you prepare for the Virginia Pork Festival:

  1. What is the date and time of the festival?
    The date and time of the Virginia Pork Festival can vary from year to year. It’s best to check the festival’s official website or social media pages for the most up-to-date information regarding the upcoming event.
  2. Where is the Virginia Pork Festival located?
    The Virginia Pork Festival takes place in the town of Emporia, Virginia. The festival grounds are typically located at the Emporia-Greensville County Airport. Detailed directions and parking information can be found on the festival’s official website.
  3. Do I need to purchase tickets in advance?
    It is recommended to purchase tickets in advance to ensure entry into the festival. However, tickets may also be available at the gate on the day of the event, depending on availability. Check the festival’s website for more information on ticket purchasing options.
  4. Are pets allowed at the festival?
    While the festival loves furry friends, pets are generally not allowed at the event due to safety and health reasons. However, service animals with proper documentation are permitted.
  5. Is the festival family-friendly?
    Yes, the Virginia Pork Festival is a family-friendly event with activities and entertainment suitable for all ages. From a dedicated Kids’ Zone to live music performances, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
  6. Are vegetarian or vegan food options available?
    Yes, the festival strives to offer a variety of food options to cater to different dietary preferences. Vegetarian and vegan food options can usually be found among the food vendors. Check with individual vendors for specific offerings.
  7. What is the parking situation at the festival?
    Ample parking is typically available near the festival grounds, with designated parking areas for attendees. Some parking may require a fee, so it’s a good idea to have cash on hand. Follow the directional signs and instructions provided by the parking attendants for a smooth parking experience.
  8. Is there seating available at the festival?
    While there may be limited seating available at certain areas of the festival, it is generally advisable to bring your own chairs or picnic blankets for comfort. This will ensure you have a designated spot to relax and enjoy the food and entertainment throughout the day.
  9. Can I bring outside food or drinks to the festival?
    Outside food and drinks are typically not permitted at the festival. However, there are plenty of food and drink options available for purchase onsite to satisfy your cravings. Exceptions may be made for baby food and necessary dietary restrictions.
  10. Is there an ATM available at the festival?
    The festival usually provides ATM services on-site for attendees’ convenience. However, it’s a good idea to bring some cash with you to avoid potential lineups or ATM transaction fees.

If you have any other questions or concerns, it is recommended to visit the official Virginia Pork Festival website and review the FAQs section or contact the festival organizers directly for further assistance.



The Virginia Pork Festival is a delightful celebration of all things pork, bringing together food enthusiasts, music lovers, and families for a day of feasting and entertainment. With its rich history, mouthwatering food offerings, and vibrant atmosphere, the festival offers an experience that encapsulates the essence of Southern culture and hospitality.


From the moment you step onto the festival grounds, you’ll be greeted with the tantalizing aroma of slow-cooked pork and the sounds of live music filling the air. As you explore the vendor area, you’ll discover a diverse range of delicious food options, ranging from classic BBQ favorites to innovative culinary creations.


The Virginia Pork Festival is not just about the food – it’s a celebration of community, tradition, and the shared love of good food. Families and friends come together to create lasting memories, enjoy live entertainment, and partake in various activities that cater to all ages.


Whether you’re a devoted foodie, a music aficionado, or simply looking for a fun and unique event to attend, the Virginia Pork Festival offers something for everyone. It’s a chance to savor mouthwatering pork dishes, discover talented local chefs and artisans, and immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Virginia.


So mark your calendars and prepare to indulge in a day filled with delicious food, toe-tapping music, and a sense of community. Whether you’re a longtime pork lover or discovering the delights of Southern cuisine for the first time, the Virginia Pork Festival promises an unforgettable experience that will leave you planning your return year after year.


Join us at the Virginia Pork Festival and celebrate the flavors, traditions, and warm hospitality that make this event an exceptional gathering of pork enthusiasts and festival-goers. Come hungry, bring your friends and family, and get ready to enjoy a day that epitomizes the best of Virginia’s culinary heritage.