The Alliance for Historic Hillsborough
150 E. King St., Hillsborough NC 27278 (919) 732-7741

Hillsborough Hog Day

Join the Hillsborough/Orange County Chamber of Commerce in celebrating the 29th anniversary of Orange County’s Largest Festival, Hillsborough Hog Day.   For the first time since its’ inception, Hog Day is moving to May to take advantage of the cooler weather and beautiful springtime atmosphere in central North Carolina.   Historically held the third week in June, Hog Day attracts more than 15,000 people.   The event on May 20 & 21 will again be in the River Park off of E. Margaret Lane in downtown Hillsborough. The event features a barbecue cooking contest, live music, children’s games, classic and vintage car show, crafters, assorted vendors, Hog Day souvenirs, beer garden and lots of food. This year enjoy corn hole toss games as well as bingo from the Ladies of the Hillsborough Moose Lodge.  Children's activities include a bounce house, inflatables, hog calling contest, remote cars and pony rides. Activities are May 20 from 6 pm - 9 pm and May 21 from 9 am - 6 pm.  Admission is FREE.   

On Friday and Saturday, a Beer Garden coordinated by Chapel Hill’s Carolina Brewery will provide beer to those over 21 in a tent near the music stage. Hog Day begins on Friday evening, May 20 when 32 teams of cookers from all over the state begin to slow cook 3500 pounds of pork to perfection during the night, while, you can enjoy music from local rock/funk band Hot Rooster.   Gates open at 6 pm and music featuring The Baloneyheads followed by Hot Rooster begins at 6:30 pm.  The event is festival style, so bring a blanket or chair. Food vendors will be available or please visit some of Hillsborough's wonderful restaurants. In addition, volunteers will be selling barbecue to benefit the Orange County Historical Museum.  Patrons are requested to bring canned or boxed food items as donations to the Food Pantry for Orange Congregations in Mission on Friday.  Also children can enjoy the bounce house inflatables. 

On Saturday May 21, the Eno River Farmers’ Market takes place at the Public Market House from 8 am-10 am, while Hog Day festivities begin at 9 am.  To follow, the barbecue contest winners for 2011 will be announced.  Throughout the day additional vendors will also be selling food, drinks and other items.  Music begins at 10 am and includes Orange Charter School Jazz Band, Nicki Parker, Big Time Party Band, Southern Breeze Band, Red's Rhythm and Flatline. The Triangle Thunder Cruisers will present a car show, with vintage and classic cars, also beginning at 10 am on Saturday.  Serving as master of ceremonies will be meteorologist Don "Big Weather" Schwenneker from ABC 11 Eyewitness News WTVD from 11 am to 2 pm and Zach Ward from DSI Comedy Theater in Carrboro from 2 pm – 4 pm. 

Continuing is the Second Annual Hog Day Invitational.  The top five finishers in the Barbecue Cooking Contest from both 2009 and 2010 will be competing for People's Choice. The pork prepared by these seven cooks (there are some repeats) will be served individually to the public, which will then vote for their favorite.  For $5, attendees will be able to purchase 5 samples and vote for People's Choice. Under the big barbecue tent, you can purchase BBQ sandwiches for $4, soft drinks for $1 and pounds of BBQ for $6.  But remember, when the BBQ is gone, it’s gone! In 2010 all BBQ was sold by 2 pm.

Hog Day T-shirts, caps, visors, aprons, stuffed pigs, and collectible Hillsborough mugs will be sold.  Also numerous arts and crafts booths featuring local garden art, weaving, sculpture, woodwork, painting, jewelry and pottery will be on display.  Also, don’t forget to check out the products and services offered from area businesses, including local non-profit booths.

Hillsborough Hog Day continues to emphasize being green with ongoing efforts in reducing waste, and composting and recycling as much possible.  Even though it will be cooler, for the safety of attendees, people are asked to leave their pets at home.
To get to Hillsborough Hog Day, from I-85 take exit 164 or from I-40 take exit 261.  Parking is limited in downtown Hillsborough but there is parking available for $3 in the Eno River Parking Deck behind the new Weaver Street Market.  Designated handicap parking is available.  

Entertainment  & Event Schedule

Friday, May 20, 2011                                    6 PM – 9 PM

6 PM                           Hog Day Opens

6:30 - 7:30 PM            The Baloneyheads (Cover Band)

7:30 - 9 PM                 Hot Rooster (Funk)

Saturday, May 21, 2010                                9 AM – 6 PM

8 AM – 10 AM           Eno River Farmers’ Market at the Public Market House

9 AM                           Hog Day Opens

9:45 AM                      BBQ Cooking Contest Winners Announced

10:00 AM                    Triangle Thunder Cruisers Antique, Classic and Vintage Car Show Opens

10:00 – 10:30 AM       Orange Charter School Jazz Band

10:30 – 11:15 AM       Nicki Parker (Country)

Don "Big Weather" Schwennecker,  WTVD ABC 11 Eyewitness News Meteorologist  - Master of Ceremonies  from 11 AM – 2 PM

11:30 – 12:30 PM       Big Time Party Band (Beach)

1:00 – 2:00 PM           Southern Breeze Band (Southern Rock)

Zach Ward from the DSI Comedy Theater in Carrboro- Master of Ceremonies  from 2 PM – 4 PM

2:00 PM                      People’s Choice BBQ Winners Announced

2:30 – 3:30 PM           Red’s Rhythm  (Adult Contemporary)

4:00 – 5:30 PM           Flatline (Southern Rock)

Hog Day sponsors include Foundation Members - Blue Cross/Blue Shield of North Carolina, BB&T, PHE, Inc.; Piedmont Electric Membership Cooperative, Sports Endeavors, Summit Consulting Engineers and UNC Health Care.  Other sponsors are Performance Automall, Rep. Bill Faison, Century Link, Carolina Brewery, Rick Ashby Insurance, Steve Garrett DDS, Duke Energy, 1360 WCHL, WTVD, Chapel Hill/Orange County Visitors Bureau, The Carrboro Citizen, The News of Orange County, Triangle Thunder Cruisers, Carolina Game & Fish, McDonald’s of Hillsborough, Shankle Sound Reinforcement and Orange County Solid Waste Management.  Special thanks to the Town of Hillsborough and Orange County Government.  

For information, please call the Chamber at (919) 732-8156 or visit



Event date and time: 
Sat, 05/21/2011 - 9:00am - 6:00pm