NEW ORLEANS - There's a big announcement for those who are gearing up for the ninth year of 'Hogs for the Cause.'
The event is set to take place from March 30 to April 1, and many participants take the whole year to get ready. However, officials said the three-day fundraiser will now be held on the grounds behind the University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena.
For six years the sights, sounds and delicious smells of 'Hogs for the Cause' have filled City Park.
"This is a gourmet BBQ event with creativity," said Drew Herrington with Team Fleur-de-Que. "It's like you have 100 teams of artists trying to come up with the best dish to wow the audience.”
2017 will be no exception, except for the location change.
"City Park was an amazing partner and we loved growing there," said event Co-Founder, Becker Hall. "In order for us to grow the event and keep everyone happy, this was just a great move for us."
The area behind the University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena had what organizers said they were looking for. It included a flat, sturdy surface, lots of land, and parking for thousands.
"I think we offer a lot of things," said Assistant General Manager of the Lakefront Arena, David Aramand. "We have great on-site parking, we have things that can help a lot with the teams, we have concrete pads here, exterior roads for logistics. I think it's a great opportunity for everybody."
The spot was chosen after event organizers said they got feedback from participants and competitors about what they would like to see at the event location. It’s a new partnership with the University of New Orleans, and it’s something many say they’re very excited about.
“We’re used to being a self-reliant team whether it’s bringing our own water, bringing our own electricity and power," said Herrington. "It’s just become more and more of a challenge over the years, and when we heard about some of the amenities that would be included in the plots here, we threw our hands up and said this is a place we want to be.”
Those involved said this new location will heat up the competition.
"We're fired up, no pun on the smokers," said Hall. "We're ready for it."
They said the change is already cooking up excitement for another successful year.
The purpose of Hogs for the Cause is to provide aid and relief of those variable expenses and economic burdens which families face while their child is being treated for pediatric brain cancer. Since the event started eight years ago, the organization has raised more than $1 million.