Team Information

Team Information

The city of Memphis will feel the heat once again this spring as the annual World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival (WCHWCF®) fills Memphis with the tantalizing  aroma of the infamous hot wing.

For the annual WCHWCF there will be approximately 100 team spaces which will be guaranteed on a first-come, first served basis. Extensions or announcements for additional space may be allowed at the discretion of management, but cannot be guaranteed.

Rules & Regulations

Hot wing defined – a hot wing is defined as any piece of the wing, drummie or flat or a full wing: drummie, flat and flap, cooked, flavored and seasoned.

  1. The wings for contest entry may not be pre-cooked, sauced, or maintained in any way prior to inspection at the beginning of the cooking contest. Use of anything pre-cooked, pre-sauced, pre-marinated, and/or pre-brined shall result in disqualification. The meat inspection will be at 9:00 a.m. on the day of the event. Again please do not start cooking or seasoning your wings until the meat inspection is complete. Please see below the judging rules for further information.
  2. Each contestant shall supply all of their meat, cooking ingredients, individual cooking devices (propane or charcoal) utensils, preparation tables, etc.
  3. The only thing provided to contestants by the world championship hot wing contest & festival and is a regulation cooking area.
  4. There is a mandatory cooks meeting that will be held at Neil’s Bar on Quince Ave 57527 Quince Road Memphis, TN 38119, Monday, October 17th 2021 at 6:00 p.m. a representative for your cooking team must be present at this meeting.
  5. Each contestant may have as many assistants as necessary. Any cook or assistant that handles food in any way must be at the mandatory cooks meeting (see above no.4).

6. Each contestant must comply with all applicable rules and regulations of the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department including, but not limited to the following: 

a. Meat must be at 35°or less before cooking. Coolers with plenty of ice will keep it cold enough.

There will be a team judging meeting at 10:00 a.m. at the Judging Tent.

b. After cooking at a temperature of 140° until submitted to the judges at 1:00 p.m. the day of the event – please see below the Judging Rules for more detailed information.

c. The first judging will be at 1:00 p.m. for the 30 teams competing. The top 36 teams will be notified by the Judging Committee. The second round of judging will be at 4:00 p.m. for the top 36 teams. The winners will be announced at 6:00 p.m. on the main stage.

CLARIFICATION: If the product is turned in and is disqualified, it receives a one (1) in all criteria. If the teams do not turn in a product or are disqualified and not allowed to turn it in, that team’s category is not judged and receives no score.

        d. Cleanliness of the cook, assistants, and contestant’s area is required.

        e. No live animals are allowed in the cooking area. 

        f. Each team MUST have hand cleaning capabilities. Soap and water or waterless hand cleaner are acceptable.

7. Teams are available to setup  at 6:00 pm on October 21nd through 9:00 am October 22th 2021. The World Championship Hot Wing Festival & Contest will open to the public at 11:00 a.m. The streets must not have any vehicles present at this time in order to keep our pedestrians safe.

8. Vehicles will be allowed to “load-in” in the cooking area during the designated loading times which will be provided by the event staff and coordinators in the mandatory cooks meeting.

9. Vehicles will not be allowed back in the cooking areas after the contest for “load-out” until the last band has finished performing. The area will be blocked off by security until then.

10. No live bands, or combos, etc., will be allowed in the individual cooking areas at any time during the event.

11. Restrooms will be available in designated areas.

12. Children must be supervised at all times during the festival.

13. Trash bags will be provided by each contestant. A dumpster for trash will be on-site. Contestants will be responsible for cleaning up their area after the contest. Trash must be placed in the dumpster, not next to it. 

14. Teams must discard used oil from their cookers at the designated receptacles that will be provided at the event.

15. The world championship hot wing festival & contest committee reserves the right to reject any application. If your team’s application is not accepted, your fees be will refunded. No refunds of entry fees will be made once you have been accepted into the contest whether your team participates or not.

16. Space is guaranteed for the first 100 paid applications accepted World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival Committee.

17. It is the responsibility of each team to see that the contest area is cleaned and all equipment removed from the site following the contest. If there is unnecessary trash, the team may be disqualified from any future World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival contests. 

18. The team captain will be held responsible for the conduct of their team and their guests. Under no circumstances are alcoholic beverages to be distributed (given or sold) to the general public by the teams or its contestants. The World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival Committee requests and requires that good taste be used with team conduct during the contest.

19. Team areas will be assigned closest to the stage by the order of receipt of paid entry.

20. Team booths may not block the sidewalks in any way. This area is designated for all emergency, fire, police, and ambulance personnel.

21. Each team should provide their own bucket of sand for cigarette butt disposal within their individual team area.

22. Violations of rules and regulations of the contest will result in disqualification, expulsion, and or disqualification from future participation in the festival.

23. Read and keep these rules of the world championship hot wing contest & festival. If there are any questions or concerns immediately contact the World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival for clarification.


25. No glass containers, only plastic and aluminum allowed inside the festival area, or in personal cooking areas.

26. The World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival will not be responsible for tents or other equipment left unattended before, during, or after the contest.

27. All teams must adhere to all electrical, fire and other codes, by the city, county, state and federal codes. Each team must have a fire extinguisher of a 2a, 40bc rating. Please check and make sure they are charged. All tarps must be fire retardant with a certification stating so. The World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival cannot provide electrical power for your area. Contestants may not sell food.

28. The World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival reserves the right to make additional regulations as the situations warrant decisions.

29. Any questions regarding these rules and guidelines or judging rules should be addressed immediately to the World Championship Hot Wing Contest & Festival Committee




1. A cook team is responsible jointly and severally for its head cook, its team members and its guests.

2. Excessive use of alcoholic beverages or public intoxication with a disturbance.

3. Use of illegal controlled substances.

4. Foul, abusive or unacceptable language or any language causing a disturbance.

5. Excessive noise, including but not limited to that generated from speakers, such as radios, cd players, tv’s, public address systems or amplifying equipment, will not be allowed during designated quiet hours (if applicable).

6. Fighting and/or disorderly conduct.

7. Theft, dishonesty, cheating, or use of prohibited meats or any act involving moral turpitude.

8. Violation of any of the Kansas City Bbq Society cook’s rules.

9. Excessive or continued complaints from teams on any of the above rule infractions shall be considered grounds for immediate disqualification from festival organizers.

Cooking team FAQs

Most frequent questions and answers

Yes fryers are allowed and we will provide grease traps to properly dispose of cooking oil.

In accordance to contest regulation #1, wings may not be brined, marinated or prepped in any way prior to inspection the day of the event.

Any and all such prep must be done during the event and prior to judging turn-in. Check the schedule of events for official turn-in time(s). Check the rules & regulations for the schedule of events. Once your team loads in, gets settled, and passes preliminary inspection by event staff and/or judges you will be free to begin any prep work for your competitive wing entry batch. 

Yes, depending on the size of space each team will receive event passes. Additional team members will have to acquire their own admission tickets either in advance or at the gate in order to participate.

We only provide the regulation cooking space and option to rent a private port-o-let.

Teams are required to bring with them all items; chairs, tents, tables, furniture, and necessary cooking apparatus which they may need/require while participating at our event. And remember … “all you really need is a grill” – Henry Hot Wing.

Teams generally cook about 2 cases of wings for public sampling so we ask each team to bring about  80LBS of wings for cooking during the event.

If you happen to run out of wings during the course of the event, we will have additional wings on reserve which can be provided to your team as needed should you run out of your initial batch. 

Unfortunately, the option for a private port-o-let is only available for booth sizes of 10×20 and higher due to space requirements and health department codes which prohibit such facilities in the vicinity of any cooking area’s which vend or serve to the general public.

There is no explicitly set limit on the number of folks that you can have on your wing team.

Some of our teams put a lot of effort into creative T-shirts for their team, and while we place no limits on your team’s creativity. We do ask (per contest regulation / Team Rule #36) that you refrain from incorporating, wearing, or prominently displaying any reserved terms such as “Staff” or “Security” as these are explicitly reserved for our various production team, volunteers and/or third party contractors.

You may pay your application fees either online or by check (through mail). You will be presented with online payment options at the end of your application.

All teams must satisfy the application fee requirement in order to participate in our competition.

If you are experiencing any issues submitting your application, please contact us for assistance at

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