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Grillin' for Healing raises $33,500 for Hearts and Hands Clinic

Grillin’ for Healing was a great time for a great cause! The BBQ cook-off fundraiser raised over $33,500 for The Hearts and Hands Clinic on Sunday, March 24, 2024.

Grillin’ for Healing has become Hearts and Hands Clinic’s signature fundraiser, and with its relaxing atmosphere, live music, and great cause, it’s no wonder the event is such a hit. Grillin’ for Healing celebrated its third year on Sunday, March 24, 2024. The BBQ cook-off raised over $33,500 for the clinic, which provides free primary care to Bulloch County residents who are uninsured and living at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. 

The event began as the brainchild of PK Huling and John Allen, who continue to host and organize it. This year’s event raised $33,500, which puts the total funds raised by the event over the last three years at nearly $90,000. “I am so thankful to PK and John for organizing and hosting this event,” said Kara Holland, Hearts and Hands’ Executive Director.

Matt (PK) Huling, Kara Holland, and Dr. John Allen at the 2023 Event

“All of the proceeds go directly toward helping our patients access essential healthcare services. Most of our patients are working, but they don’t have health benefits and they can’t quite make ends meet,” Holland explained during a pre-meeting with the event’s judges.

This year's winners received a trophy designed and donated by Jill Carter with Southern Pottery & Art Studio.

The event's live entertainment was provided by several talented local musicians who stepped in when Saturday's weather caused a date change: Jenni Kight and Jake Hallman, Pladd Dot's School of Rock and Roll, Brent Stephens, and Corey Smith. 

BBQ Competition Winners

1st Place - Lost Boys (Chris Wheeler, Robby Sewell, Weston Rikard)


2nd Place - Out Smokin’ (Tony Reagan, David Kennedy)


3rd Place - Pellet Pig Pickers (Ray Driggers)


Grillin' for Healing BBQ Competition Teams

"Thank you to all the teams who came out and all the people and organizations who sponsored us. Thank you for an amazing, fun-filled day! Congratulations to the winning teams," said Holland. 

Eight total teams competed in Sunday's event: 

  • Pale Smoke - Jarrod Akins
  • Limp Brizkit - Matt Hill, Jeff Vickery
  • Pellet Pickers - Ray Driggers
  • Out Smokin’ - David Kennedy and Tony Reagan
  • Lost Boys BBQ - Chris Wheeler, Robby Sewell, Weston Rikard
  • Ogeechee Steamers & Cookers - Brian Smith and Michele Humphries
  • Bulloch BBQ - Cory Rushing, Cade Rushing
  • Charred and Dangerous - Joey Fennell


  • Kara Holland- Hearts and Hands Clinic
  • PK Huling- Co-host of the event
  • John Allen- Co-host of the event


  • Blake Claxton
  • Sean Davis
  • Mimi Hill
  • AJ Jetwani
  • Andrew Lavoie
  • Aaron Popkin
  • Brian Sellers
  • Mitt Smith

The Hearts & Hands Clinic

The Hearts & Hands Clinic provides free medical care and prescription medication to Bulloch County residents who are uninsured, living at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guideline, and ineligible for Medicaid and Medicare. To qualify, patients must have a chronic condition such as diabetes, hypertension, seizure disorders, COPD, or asthma. Without consistent medical care and prescription medication, these diseases are life-threatening.

Hearts and Hands' volunteers Will Wilson, Marley Mangione, Eduardo Marin, and Audrey Jacobs represented the clinic on Sunday.

The clinic provided nearly 2,500 patient visits in 2023 thanks to 57 health care provider partnerships and 16 licensed volunteer medical and dental providers caring for patients on-site. The ultimate goal of The Hearts & Hands Clinic and its volunteers is to stabilize health for adult residents of Bulloch County to ready them for a job search. 

Thanks to all of the event's sponsors!

Financial support raised from Grillin’ for Healing will be used to provide medical care to new patients from Bulloch County. Medical care consists of lab draws, nursing visits, dental care, women’s health, primary medical care, specialty referrals, and chronic care education. In addition, it will provide funds for free prescription medication to patients such as diabetic supplies, insulin, blood pressure medication, and inhalers. The Hearts & Hands Clinic neither prescribes nor stores narcotic medication and does not provide pain management.

For more information on the Hearts & Hands Clinic or to donate to the cause, please visit