A Brief History of the Newport Pig Cooking Contest
The Newport Pig Cookin’ got it’s start in 1978 when Doris Oglesby, the Director of the Newport Developmental Center, a school for physically and mentally challenged children, called Mayor Derryl Garner to help her raise funds for furniture for a new addition being added to the school
Mayor Garner contacted 18 various churches and organizations in the Newport area requesting their ideas to help raise the needed money. As luck would have it, some Newport men had cooked in a pig cooking contest that previous weekend in Jacksonville, NC. From that group, Larry Howard and Lionel Garner contacted Mayor Garner with the thought that Newport could have a contest too. It was decided to try it with the goal of cooking 15 pigs to raise the $5,000 that was needed.
The contest was held in early 1979 and with donations and help from just about everyone in town plus our good neighbors from Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, 42 pigs were cooked and $15,000 was donated to the Developmental Center.
Larry Howard was the first person in charge of the Newport Pig Cookin’ with Thorton Pringle, Ann Howard and Jim Ferrell heading it up consecutively. In 1985 we were incorporated with Jim Ferrell as President.
The organization has grown over the years and now has it’s own building filled with warmers, pots and pans and many needed items along with a ticket booth, canteens and a souvenir trailer, much of it being donated by various businesses and groups. Currently heading up this amazing group of people is our president of many years, Jim Bristle.
The recipients of our grants, over the years, have included various sports teams, school booster groups, churches, scout groups and other non-profit organizations. We are strictly a volunteer organization and welcome anyone interested in becoming a member of this great team. It takes many dedicated members to be able to accomplish all that we do.
We are proud of the history of the Newport Pig Cookin’, “The Largest Non-Profit Whole Hog Contest “ in the USA, so come out and show your support and join a great group of people.