This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala (WHNT) — The EarlyWorks Family of Museums has announced the annual WhistleStop Bar-B-Que Festival will not return for 2023.

EarlyWorks Executive Director Bart Williams said the decision comes after a months-long evaluation of what activities and events it uses for fundraising. He said after careful deliberation the board of directors has chosen to go in a different direction and move away from the festival.

Williams said this means WhistleStop Festival 2022, which was held at John Hunt Park last September will be the last iteration of the festival which began in 2001.

Williams said that the EarlyWorks Foundation has produced the festival, which has been one of the premier BBQ competitions in the South, for over 20 years. He said during that time it has been a privilege to entertain the community while raising money for education initiatives at the EarlyWorks Children’s Museum, Alabama Constitution Hall Park and the Historic Huntsville Depot.

Williams said over the last 22 years thousands of cooking teams, volunteers, partners, vendors and sponsors have let their time and talents to the event and the foundation is incredibly grateful for that support.

Williams said EarlyWorks plans to bring new events to the community as a part of this transition