Governor’s Buy Local Cookout 2024

Governor’s Buy Local Cookout 2024

Governor Moore’s Buy Local Cookout 2024 – 

Restaurant/Chef Application

The Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) is excited to announce the 2024 Governor’s Buy Local Cookout. This annual cookout celebrates Maryland agriculture by featuring Maryland restaurants partnering with Maryland farmers and watermen showcasing products like wild-caught Chesapeake blue catfish, oysters, pork, beef, sweet corn, watermelon, and more! Last year’s cookout saw approximately 500 attendees including Maryland elected officials, ag industry stakeholders, community leaders, non-profit organizations, and of course, our farmers and seafood producers!

MDA is seeking chefs and restaurants to participate in the Cookout. Chefs from across the state are encouraged to submit recipes using Maryland food items and working with at least one Maryland farm or watermen. Recipes will be chosen in each of the following categories: appetizer, main dish, side dish or salad, and dessert. Original recipes will be selected based on simplicity, creativity, availability of ingredients, geographic representation, and maximum use of local ingredients (minimum 50% use of local ingredients is required). The following outlines how to apply as well as a timeline for due dates. Please ensure you also review the guidelines below and can adhere to the policies before applying.

Culinary high school and college teams are also encouraged to submit recipes. Student teams submitting poultry recipes may be eligible to receive a donation of poultry from a member of the Delmarva Chicken Association if they are selected to participate in the Governor’s cookout (limited to one high school and one college team).

Date: July 18, 2024 

Time: 5 – 7 p.m.

Location: Maryland Department of Agriculture, 50 Harry S Truman Pkwy, Annapolis, MD 21401

How to Apply

  1. Use this Form to submit your recipe. Recipes must be submitted in the same format as the template. Any recipe not written in the style of the template will not be reviewed. 
  2. Be prepared to submit your recipe and at least one photo to Kristin Hanna of your proposed dish.
  3. For any questions on the form, please contact Kristin Hanna at


May 7 – Invites sent to restaurants via Restaurant Association of Maryland email list, Oyster Recovery Partnership email list, and via press release from the Maryland Department of Agriculture.

May 29 – Submissions due via the Google Form.

June 13 – Selected participants are notified via email and an additional Google Form is sent to collect information on items needed and people attending.

June 28 – 2nd Google Form is due.

July 8 – Mandatory Online Meeting for all participants. 

July 12 – Email for the day of instructions sent. 

July 18 – Event!

Rules and Guidelines

  1. This invitation is open to Maryland chefs working with at least one Maryland farm, waterman or other producer with a heavy emphasis on Maryland sourced products (minimum 50% of ingredients).  While products from on-site gardens and foraging in recipes are okay, we strongly encourage you to work with a Maryland farmer, waterman or other producer.   
  2. ENTRIES ARE DUE BY 5pm on Wednesday, May 29. Submit your original recipe online via the 2024 Governor’s Buy Local Cookout Entry Form                       
  3. All recipes become the property of the Maryland Department of Agriculture and may be published with credit to the author. Entry constitutes permission to edit, modify, adapt, publish or otherwise use recipes with credit but without compensation. Recipes must be original.
  4. Recipe selection is made by the Governor and MDA committee based on simplicity, creativity, availability of ingredients, geographic representation, and maximum use of local Maryland ingredients. Preference will be given to recipes with high creativity, high sourcing of local products and low difficulty. 
  5. Previously submitted recipes are not eligible.  
  6. There will be a mandatory conference call for all participants and to those who have not participated in the past two years on Monday, July 8 at 10:00 a.m.
  7. Once you are notified of being selected, a new Google Form will be sent for you to request your needs for the cookout. This form must be completed by June 28 at 5pm
  8. Participants are responsible for transportation to Annapolis to prepare the recipe at the Cookout.
  9. Participants will provide all recipe ingredients, mixing, cooking utensils, and equipment. Be prepared to provide moderate sample/tasting-sized portions for up to 500 people. MDA will confirm the final head count one week prior to the event date.
  10. Food must be stored and prepared according to health code standards.
  11. Two 6-foot tables, table coverings (red, black or gold), small plates, small bowls, spoons, forks, and other serving ware will be provided. As this is a green event, we ask that you do not bring any other serving utensils, plates, napkins, etc. If you need special items for your dish, you can request it through the Google Form once you have been selected as a participant.  
  12. One 10×10 tent will be provided.
  13. No warming, chilling, preparation facilities, or electricity will be available. No BBQ pits or kegs will be allowed on the lawn. Above-ground gas, charcoal grills, and quiet generators are allowed. You will need to properly dispose of your charcoal if you bring a charcoal grill.
  14. Please bring your own ice. Water will be available for cooling or heating trays.
  15. The space on property is limited; your total space to prep, cook, and serve is within the 10’ x 10’ tent area. This also includes your cooking equipment.
  16. Arrival for set up and preparation may begin at 1:30 p.m. (no earlier) on July 18. Stations should be ready by 4:45 p.m. We request that you stay until 7:00 pm and properly breakdown and clean up your site afterwards. Trash, recycling, and composting receptacles will be provided. Failure to do so may result in you not being considered for future events.  
  17. Signage for your tent will be provided. Promotional signage, i.e. pull-up exhibits and other trade show-type signs are not allowed. If you should set up such materials, you will be asked to remove it. You may bring promotional materials to place flat on your table. In the past, some participants have decorated their space.
  18. While the dress code is casual, please dress professionally.
  19. Please bring a photo ID and have everyone in your party bring a photo ID. Only those who have responded and are on the guest list will be permitted entry to the event, this includes your helpers for the day, please RSVP for them on the Google form. 
  20. Backing in and unloading on the semi-circle is not guaranteed as there is limited space. Please work with each other to communicate if you need someone to move. All vehicles must be moved from the semi-circle by 4:30pm. 


Preparation, invitations for producers and chefs, and logistics:

Kristin Hanna, 410-991-3968,

Social media, press release, or website:

Jessica Hackett, 410-924-3955,