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Whistlestop Festival 2016 for Kids

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Whistlestop Festival 2016 for Kids

If you’re around downtown Huntsville this week you might be noticing a lot of buzzing activity and the smell of hickory BBQ lingering in the air.

The 16th annual Whistlestop Weekend is underway on the grounds of the historic Huntsville Depot, and the weather looks FINE!

Kid’s Activities

Sure, Whistlestop is the perfect opportunity for foodie families to slow down and appreciate the slow-cooked fare of master chefs that are very good at what they do. But you can also have tons of fun with the kids while you’re there.

  • Family Fun Zone – This favorite family spot is back and your kids will love it! Located at the very heart of the Depot grounds, it’s full of inflatables, live music, more inflatables, shade tents, some giant inflatables, and a huge sand pit for creative digging. Did I mention inflatables? There’s one for all ages & sizes.

Whistlestop Festival sand pit


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  • Kid’s Q Competition – Created especially for your Little Pit Masters, this unique kid’s grilling contest involves chicken combined with the team’s favorite rubs or marinades. Participating kids must be between the ages of 8-14 and have one adult supervising. You can see the complete list of rules here – just be there at 10AM on Saturday for the Cook’s Meeting and be prepared to decorate your team’s tent area! Register your kid’s team online HERE.
  • Cornhole! – If you can’t get enough of this addictive game, it’s the perfect activity to pass the time while the pork butt is roasting to perfection. There’s a tournament if you think you can hang with the big dogs, but there are also several cornhole sets around the whole festival.
Sample the Whistlestop Festival

Tasting is always the best part, right? On Friday at 6:00 PM in the Roundhouse, you can be a judge and help pick the best chicken wings during the “WhistleStop Wing Thing”!

Also, on Saturday from 1:00 – 3:00 PM it’s the “People’s Choice” as you visit the ShadeTree cooking teams that offer samples and vote for your favorite BBQ samples with dollar bills and pocket change. Get there early at 11:00 AM to participate in the Chili Tasting which is a new addition for 2016.

Whistlestop Collage

Whistlestop Music

train square2A big part of the event are the musical acts that are brought in to perform. The headliners this year are Edwin McCain and Chris Jansen, but there are even more great acts lined up. Get the full schedule here.


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If you’re not a big fan of either headliner, or want to head the kids home before the night crowd arrives just check it carefully and plan accordingly. You can always keep playing in the Family Fun Zone while the concert is going on across the grounds.

Whistlestop Details 2016

Address: 320 Church Street, Huntsville (map)
Dates: May 6 & 7, 2016
Websitewww.whistlestopweekend.com
Cost: Weekend Pass (9+): $35
Weekend Youth Pass $10
Single Day: $25 for adults, $5 for kids

Buy tickets online. 


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