What is the Big Apple Barbecue Block Party?

The Big Apple Barbecue Block Party takes place the second weekend each June in Madison Square Park and surrounding streets, attracting people from near and far to celebrate America’s authentic culinary and musical traditions. Event admission is free, with award-winning barbecue and Southern-inspired fare from the country’s top pitmasters available for purchase. Live performances from emerging and established rock, blues and soul artists take place onstage throughout the day.

Where is the event located?

Madison Square Park and the surrounding streets from 23rd to 27th Street, and between 5th Avenue and Park Avenue. Learn more about Getting Here.

What is a Pitmaster?

A Pitmaster is a barbecue authority who cooks up mouthwatering ‘cue. At the event, you’ll have the opportunity to sample ‘cue from the nation’s top, award-winning pitmasters from barbecue capitals like Texas, the Carolinas, Alabama, Tennessee and more.

Where can I buy cool event merchandise?

Official merchandise may be purchased at our Online Store, or on-site at the Merch Tent located in the South area of the park.

How can my organization become a sponsor of the BABBP?

To inquire about sponsorship opportunities, please contact info@bigapplebbq.org.

Who should I contact with any general inquiries?

For general inquiries, please contact info@bigapplebbq.org.

Can we bring lawn chairs, blankets, and a cooler?

Yes! Feel free to bring all your extra picnic essentials to enhance your day of ‘cue in the park. However, note that lawn space and benches are limited and first-come first-served.

Are dogs and other pets permitted? Or just service animals?

Yes! Madison Square Park is pet friendly and even has a dog park area for your furry friends.

Is the BABBQ wheelchair accessible?

Yes! The entire Madison Square Park is accessible. There are also lots of benches for first-come first-served seating. And weather permitting, the grass lawns are open for picnics and additional ground seating and lounging.

What is the age limit for the event?

The Big Apple Barbecue Block Party is open to ALL ages. However in the Big Piggin’ VIP area, guests under 10 must be accompanied by an adult with a Big Piggin’ Pass.


BigPiggin’ VIP Pass

What is a BigPiggin’ Pass?

The best barbecue experience in NYC awaits in a BigPiggin’ VIP Pass. Upgrade to our ‘cue heaven of eats, drinks, and first class spoils while you live it up at Big Apple Barbecue Block Party. Learn more.

A BigPiggin’ Pass allows VIP access for one person.

Does the BigPiggin’ VIP Pass allow event access all weekend?

The BigPiggin’ VIP Pass allows access to the VIP area ONLY for the date purchased. A separate VIP pass is needed for each day.

Note: a BigPiggin’ Pass allows VIP access for one person.

What happened to the FastPass?

In an effort to improve upon your experience, we’re now accepting both cash and credit cards at all locations for a faster purchasing process.

Do I need to purchase a ticket for the Music Stage?

Nope – the performances are free!

Can I purchase a BigPiggin’ VIP Pass for a friend/gift?

Sure! Please indicate the alternate shipping address and/or Will Call pick-up name during the purchase process.

When will I receive my BigPiggin’ VIP Pass?

BigPiggin’ VIP Passes will ship within 2-4 weeks prior to the event.

If you selected advance delivery, but have not yet received your pass with 72 hours from the event, please contact our ticketing provider, Front Gate Tickets via email at support@frontgatetickets.com or call 888.512.SHOW (7469).

If you selected Will Call delivery, your BigPiggin’ VIP Pass can be picked up from the BABBQ Box Office on the day of the event with a photo ID.

I see a good deal on Craigslist / StubHub... Should I?

Any passes purchased outside of the authorized e-commerce site Front Gate Tickets, are not the responsibility of the Big Apple Barbecue Block Party and are not guaranteed to be valid.

We strongly encourage you to purchase a pass from our site directly so we may ensure a great ‘cue experience.

Where do the proceeds of Big Apple Barbecue Block Party go?

The Big Apple Barbecue Block Party is proud to support the Madison Square Park Conservancy, the organization responsible for the beauty, ongoing maintenance, and programming of this historic park.

I live outside of the US. Can I get my BigPiggin’ VIP Pass sent to me?

Please contact ticketing provider, Front Gate Tickets for assistance with International orders. Email support@frontgatetickets.com or call 888.512.SHOW (7469).

I purchased a BigPiggin’ VIP Pass for the wrong day. Can I switch?

All purchases are final. No exchanges or refunds are permitted. Please contact Front Gate Tickets for extenuating circumstances or additional questions regarding your order. Email support@frontgatetickets.com or call 888.512.SHOW (7469).

I purchased a BigPiggin’ VIP Pass, but can no longer attend. Can I get a refund?

We are sad to hear you can no longer join us, however all sales are final. For additional information, please review our purchase policies: http://www.frontgatetickets.com/support/terms/

Since I placed my order, I moved and need to update my address.

Congrats on the new home! Simply log into your Front Gate Tickets account and update your shipping address. You’ll need your email address, order ID #, the last 4 digits of the credit card used, and your new address. You can email support@frontgatetickets.com with this information as well.

I still have $ on my FastPass from previous years. Can I still use it?

While we appreciate your past attendance, passes are neither transferable nor refundable, and are not valid for 2016. We are unable to apply the funds elsewhere at this time.


Food & Drink

How do I purchase food and beverages at the event?


Admission to the Big Apple Barbecue Block Party is free, so no ticket is needed to attend.

Barbecue is sold directly at the Pitmasters’ rigs. Desserts and beverages may be purchased as well. Cash and credit cards will be accepted.

What culinary offerings can I expect to find at the event?


The Big Apple Barbecue Block Party offers a selection of different barbecue styles and items, from pulled pork sandwiches, to ribs, sausage, and brisket, alongside Southern sides and desserts.

We also host a Beer Garden within the park, and more delicious debuts to be announced as the party gets closer!

What does Low & Slow mean, and why do some pits have longer wait times?


Low and slow is the process of slow cooking meat — the temperature is lowered so the cooking time is extended. Where the Pitmasters are in their cook will change the wait time… but if they put 12-16 hours into preparing a dish, the 15 minutes or so you’re in line isn’t so bad!


Press & Media

2016 Press & Marketing Inquiries

For press inquiries, please contact Sarah Abell. For marketing information, please contact Brooke Leal.

2016 Press Application

Check back for the 2016 Press Application.