CHARLOTTE, N.C.-- Organizers with the Mallard Creek Annual Barbeque have started prepping for the 88th year of the event.

At the community house, the chefs have already started turning up the heat seasoning, chopping and smoking 15,000 pounds of barbecue.

The event is a tradition dating back to 1929. “It was the beginning of the [Great] Depression,” an organizer told NBC Charlotte’s Billie Jean Shaw. "We're doing it all the same we've done in the past."

“The church had put an addition on the education building and they were having trouble paying the contractors." So like any faithful North Carolina citizen, the congregation turned to the good book of barbeque and started a fundraiser.

"The first year may have been like $80,” said the organizer. That $80 victory now brings in thousands used toward missions within the Mallard Creek Presbyterian Church.

Last year 50% of the proceeds went to victims of Hurricane Matthew.

The event is also a place for attendees to pile up a plate of politics and pork. Over the years, the cookout has turned out to be one of the top places politicians campaign for their parties.

Organizers expect 20,000 people at this year’s barbeque. The event is Thursday, October 26 and starts at 10 am.

You can find event information here.