The Fayetteville Swamp Dogs, will host the 3rd Annual Big Bite on Saturday, April 20 from 1 to 7 p.m. This community event will take place at J.P Riddle Stadium, a.k.a. “The Swamp.” The event is designed for local restaurants and caterers from all over the Sandhills region to showcase their fare and share their offerings with the community. The participants will have one day to put their specialties on display for the public.
“We have a good group of participants this year,” said Phillip Sims, SwampDogs outside events and community relations coordinator. “The restaurants this time are Off the Hook: a Taco Emporium, which was recently opened by the Invisible Chef; The Parkton Grill, Trade Street Café and Elite Catering, Royal Grill, Fazoli’s, Roly Poly Sandwiches, Honey Baked Ham Company, Crystal’s Sweet Treats, Heavenly Ice, which serves sno cones and shaved ice treats and there will also be an organic coffee set up.”
While entry to the event is free, some of the activities are not. “Food sampling tickets cost $1 each,” said Sims. “Pricing at each vendor is up to them. They will have sample-sized servings. For example, a sample taco may cost 2-3 tickets or people may be able to get half a sandwich or wrap for two tickets, but that is determined by each vendor.”
At the end of the day, the tickets are counted, and the vendors get to keep 80 percent of the money they raise. “The other 20 percent goes into the SwampDogs community fund,” said Sims. “We use that fund to help out the many nonprofits that we support in the community. In the past we have given to charities like the Karen Chandler Trust Fund and the Wounded Warriors. It doesn’t benefit just one cause, we partner with many organizations.”
Being a family-oriented team, the SwampDogs plan to have kid-friendly activities on site, including bounce houses and face painting. “Hot Rod Tattoos is partnering with us to do face painting. They are really good,” said Sims.
Like most events at The Swamp, there will be plenty to see and do. Attendees can look forward to some of the community’s best food, fun activities and live music. The Cumberland County Cornhole Championship is scheduled to take place at 3 p.m. The entry fee for the Cornhole Championship is $25 per person and includes three food-sample tickets. The first place team will receive a cash prize, two season tickets to the SwampDogs and the opportunity to throw out the first pitch at a home game.
“We have four bands that are scheduled to play,” said Sims. “They are going to play music on the beer deck on the left field side.” At 1 p.m. Autumn Nicholas will kick-off the music. Each band will play about an hour or so. At 2:30 p.m., Essential Elements will perform, followed by Chris Hurst at 4 p.m. and Python at 5:30 p.m.
Ring Wars Carolina professional wrestling will be on hand providing live wrestling exhibitions. Sims said that the wrestling ring will be set up on the field and that the matches will take place between the music sets.
“The Big Bite started as a way to give local restaurants a venue to showcase what delicacies they have,” said Sims. “We are all about supporting local businesses. Last year we hosted between 700 and 800 people. The goal is to grow each year and put on a bigger and better event every year. So that is what we are hoping to do.”
Email Phillip Sims at Phillip@GoSwampDogs.com or call 910-426-5900 for more information.
Photo: Visitors to The Big Bite can sample food and enjoy good music and other activities.