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Hogs for the Cause releases 2016 lineup for the festival in New Orleans City Park



  Alt-country bands Shovels & Rope and Deer Tick top the music lineup for the eighth annual Hogs for the Cause ( scheduled for April 1-2, 2016, in New Orleans City Park. The barbecue festival raises funds to assist families of children with pediatric cancer.

  In 2014, husband and wife duo Shovels & Rope — aka Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent — released its acclaimed album Swimmin' Time, the follow-up to 2012's breakthrough O' Be Joyful. The band's performance at the 2015 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival was a loose, foot-stomping trade of barn-burning rock 'n' roll, harmony-filled dirges and grinning storytelling country-folk.

  Also performing at the 2016 event are Greensky Bluegrass, funk supergroup Dragon Smoke, bluesman Tab Benoit, Twiddle, American Aquarium, Phil Cook, Big Sam's Funky Nation and Great Peacock, as well as New Orleans honky tonkers The Deslondes, singer-songwriter Kristin Diable, Luke Winslow-King's Electric Trio, Sweet Crude and Motel Radio.

  The event usually features more than 80 teams competing for honors for best whole hog, best ribs, best pork shoulder, best sauce and an open category for creative dishes called "porkpourri."

  Festival tickets are available on its website. Discounted two-day general admission passes are $35, and discounted two-day "PassPork" tickets are $75 and guarantee faster event entry plus $45 in "Hoggy Dollars." Two-day "Boss Hog" tickets are $350 and include access to an open bar, private bathroom and view of the stages plus $45 in "Hoggy Dollars."

  For 2016, the festival also will offer a limited number of food judge tickets for Saturday for $45, which includes general admission and the opportunity to judge a minimum of two food categories.

  Single-day tickets go on sale Jan. 11, 2016. Kids under age 12 get in free.

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