• Memphis Festival

    In its debut in the Southern Hot Wings Festival, Wilkes Wings captures 3rd place. - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    The Front-End Operations Team did an outstanding job with building brand awareness and customer satisfaction! - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    The team has a little fun with the 3rd place trophy. - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    From beginning of the festival to the end, Wilkes Wings received two thumbs up. - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    Another two thumbs up! - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    Everybody's working. - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    Taking a break to smile for the camera. - Memphis, TN

  • Memphis Festival

    Amidst the cloudy skies, the crowd still participated. - Memphis, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Beautiful weather and beautiful people...what a combination. - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Getting ready to compete! - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Ahhhh, nothing like the taste of hot wing milk. - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Grill masters at work. - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Pre-competition ritual. - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Waiting in line for the irresistible Wilkes Wings sauces. - Knoxville, TN

  • Knoxville Festival

    Now that's how you have fun! - Knoxville, TN

  • Walmart's

    Walmart's "Get on the Shelf" Contest

BigKahunaLogo

June 22, 2013 - Knoxville, Tenn.

 

Wilkes Wings was one of the 30 contestants at the inaugural Big Kahuna Wing Fest held in Knoxville, TN.  Hoping that the 3rd place success his team had at the Southern Hot Wing Festival in Memphis, TN would carry over to Knoxville, owner Richard Wilkes was thoroughly impressed with the festival.  “There was a huge turn out,” Richard said.  “I and everyone else underestimated how many people would show up to this inaugural event.  I think we all [contestants and coordinators] had begun to run out of supplies and chicken well before the festival was over.”  

 

 

The Big Kahuna Wing Festival was indeed a success.  There were an estimated 5,400 people in attendance and 55,000 wings served.

 

Richard and his team of 12 worked tirelessly for hours serving up deep fried and charcoal grilled hot wings with his four signature Wilkes Wings Sauces - Sweet Heat, Lemon Butter Pepper, Whiskey, and Coconut Rum.  According to Richard, Coconut Rum was a huge hit at the festival.  “Oh, boy!  The crowd could not get enough Coconut Rum sauce.  I ran out [of Coconut Rum sauce] well before the day was over.  It’s ironic that the sauce did so well, because at the festival in Memphis, Sweet Heat and Lemon Butter Pepper were the crowd’s favorite...I guess it’s a regional thing.”

 

When asked if he was disappointed that his team did not place in the top three at the festival, Richard replied, “Not at all.”  “My sauces are unique relative to traditional hot wing sauces, some [people] may argue a bit of a novelty.  So, I understand the risk I take when I enter these contests that the judges may or may not embrace the unique flavors I submit.  Based on the crowd’s reaction and repeat demand for the sauces, I think Wilkes Wings was a hit at the Big Kahuna Festival.”

 

Not only were the contestants a hit at the Big Kahuna Wing Festival, but also the bands that performed, the volunteers and coordinators who put together a well managed event, and the sponsors who donated time and resources.  

 

The Big Kahuna Wing Festival raised over $20,000 in charitable monies that will be donated to the Ronald McDonald House.  

 

Way to go, Knoxville!  We cannot wait to see you next year at the 2nd Annual Big Kahuna Wing Festival.