Weekend Events & Activities

The 2023 American Royal World Series of Barbecue will once again bring back the festival to the world's largest barbecue competition with live music and BBQ demos, delicious BBQ and local food, beer and cocktail gardens, and a BBQ marketplace authentic to Kansas City and BBQ enthusiasts. Plus, with a full line up of kid’s activities the Barbecue will have fun and entertainment for all ages. See below for opportunities we have offered in the past.



VIP Experiences

Are you the ultimate barbecue enthusiast or looking for the VIP treatment at this year's American Royal World Series of Barbecue®? Take your barbecue experience to the next level with one or all of these exclusive events!  Tickets are limited. Get your tickets for the Party of the Year or Royal Tours today! Experiences available on both Friday Night and Saturday.



American Royal's Battle of the Bands at the Backyard Barbecue

The American Royal’s World Series of Barbecue is the largest barbecue competition in the world, and this year we want to showcase some of Kansas City’s best musical talent!  The American Royal is hosting a Battle of the Bands with the top five finalists playing ONSTAGE at the World Series of Barbecue with an ultimate grand champion band winning $3,000!

Bands should submit video or audio of their local band to [email protected] by September 15th.  The top 5 acts chosen by our judges will be invited to play in the Finals LIVE on stage throughout the Backyard Barbecue at the World Series of Barbecue on September 30th at the Kansas Speedway.

Bands will play LIVE on stage at the event and the judges will take into consideration crowd engagement, social media connections, and musical performance on stage.  The winning band will be announced before awards and awarded $3,000 and be crowned the second Backyard Barbecue Battle of the Bands Grand Champion!

ALL TYPES OF MUSIC ARE WELCOME!  Large bands, one man/woman bands, anyone is welcome!  The only stipulation is live instruments must be played!  Vocals are welcome, but not necessary!  Any questions can be sent to [email protected]

American Royal's Pit Party- Friday, September 29, 2023

Join us in the “backyard” of the world’s largest Barbecue Competition!  Grab a weekend pass to get into two amazing events while the world comes to Kansas City to compete.

Hangout with your fellow Kansas Citians on Pit Road of the Kansas Speedway as the American Royal hosts Kansas City in a night you won’t forget!  Live Music, Games, Food, Drinks, and Fun await you as you party on the INFIELD of the Speedway.  Vendors will be out and selling some of KC’s finest from 3:00pm on – and stage events begin at 5:00pm.

Your weekend wristband, or single event day ticket, gets you access to the fun, stage performances, games, and activities throughout the event – grab a babysitter, because you won’t want to miss this night out.

Watchout for the BB-Qrew – our crew of party starters giving away free stuff throughout the event!  Get a picture with the BB-Qrew and tag the American Royal for your chance to be featured on stage throughout the event!

Note: The World Series of Barbecue is a BBQ contest. Teams may host private gatherings on Friday night. If you are joining a team gathering, you must have an entry ticket to the World Series of Barbecue to access the grounds of the Kansas Speedway. The entry ticket does not include entry into team’s space/private gatherings. Entry tickets do not include parking. Parking is $20/per vehicle – cash only.

KC's Backyard Barbecue- Saturday, September 30, 2023

The World is barbecuing, so come relax and have fun in the biggest backyard you could imagine!

The Infield of the Kansas Speedway will be turned into a huge backyard party with Food, Games, Drinks, Fun, Family Activities, BBQ Giveaways, and so much more!  Your Weekend Wristband gets you access to all of the fun, and you’re able to checkout some great Food and Goods vendors from right here in Kansas City!

Bring the whole family out as you travel around the ‘backyard’ playing games and having great local food. Don't miss the BBQ Sauce Wrestling,  Bobbing in Baked Beans and the 2nd Annual Battle of the Bands Competition.

The American Royal is so thankful for all heroes throughout the Kansas City area.  With BBQ competition teams coming from around the world we want everyone to know exactly who you are!!  Show off your HERO status as you enter the BBQ utilizing your discounted ticket!  Our HEROES ON DISPLAY ticket is for all of our Active and Retired Military Heroes, Healthcare Heroes, and First Responding Heroes.

Pit Road Public Engagement

Location: All down Pit road (either side of stage/middle section)

Open Hours: Friday: 3:00pm – 10:00pm, Saturday: 11:00am – 9:00pm

Sponsors and Marketplace Vendors

  • AllState Insurance
  • Ambrosi Bros
  • Avid Armor
  • Bacon Zest
  • Barbacoa de Pecoso
  • Barbecue News Magazine
  • BBQ Spot
  • Bodega Trivento Argentina
  • Bordner Home Improvement
  • Chefstemp
  • ChickHoovenSwine Bbq
  • Fabulous Fish Company
  • Fire in the Kitchen Spice Company
  • Go Chill
  • Gunter Wilhelm
  • Heritage Tractor
  • High West Whiskey
  • Hurricane Marsh
  • KC Kona Ice
  • KC Smashers
  • KC Veteran Affair Medical Center
  • Moore Water Treatment
  • National Barbecue and Grilling Association
  • Parisi
  • Rebex Cutlery
  • Reser's Fine Foods
  • Roxie’s BBQ
  • Saints & Sinners BBQ
  • Shanky's Whip Black Irish Liqueur and Whiskey Blend
  • Smokey Woods
  • Snack Shack LLC
  • T-Mobile USA, Inc.
  • The Good Charcoal Company LP
  • Veterans Community Project
  • Visit KCK