NASHVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — Can you make the best barbecue on your block or cook an amazing bowl of chili?

If so, there’s a contest coming up in Nash County, but it’s not just about the food. The organizer says his main goal is helping cancer patients.

Jason Knapp is looking forward to hosting the first annual Goat Fest, barbecue contest and chili cook-off on April 15.

Once a history teacher, he now raises goats in Nash County, but he’s always had a passion for cooking. At the beginning of the COVID pandemic, he started posting cooking videos on YouTube.

“I called it ‘Cooking a la Quarantine’ and once everything lifted up someone said, ‘Why don’t you call it ‘Kitchen Goat’ and I said, ‘That’s so stupid. Let’s try it,'” Knapp recalled.

It’s an unusual but attention-grabbing title that he also uses for his nonprofit, “The Kitchen Goat Feeds.”

“Since COVID, my wife and I have been fundraising to raise money for local cancer patients, and that’s what Goat Fest is all about,” Knapp explained.

He said he got the idea for the nonprofit after seeing cancer patients while receiving treatment for hemochromatosis, a disorder that causes his body to retain iron.

“There’d be someone sitting across me and getting chemo, and this little old lady was telling her granddaughter ‘I don’t know if I’m going to pay my co-pay or if I’m going to go to Dollar General to get groceries,’ and it stuck with me,” he said.

Since 2021, he says he’s raised more than $4,000 for the nonprofit by selling BBQ plates and merchandise. He plans to use the money raised from Goat Fest to buy grocery store gift cards for local cancer patients.

“What I’m trying to do is allow people to focus on healing rather than food insecurity,” Knapp said.

Goat Fest takes place April 15 in Nashville. For more information, click here:
Goat Fest 2023: BBQ Contest & Chili Cook Off