More than 20,000 people are expected to pack into New Iberia this weekend as 76 teams compete to be the 30th annual Gumbo World Championship Cookoff winner.

Greater Iberia Chamber CEO Janet Faulk-Gonzales says the gumbo is being cooked up for anyone that attends, and you’ll have a chance to fill up at all of the different team’s booths.

“That’s what it is all about, coming out and having some great gumbo,” says Faulk-Gonzales. “Samples will be available, and when I say samples they really are very nice ten-ounce portions.”

There’s no entry fee, and samples start at four bucks for non-seafood varieties, and five bucks for a seafood gumbo.

Gumbo servings on Sunday start at 11AM and Faulk-Gonzales says you’ll have an opportunity to try every kind of gumbo imaginable from teams all over the country.

“They will be cooking over 90 different gumbos,” says Faulk-Gonzales. “We have eight teams from out of state, and we’re looking forward to that because we kind of have an East Coast-West Coast thing going.”

The festival starts on Saturday where 52 of the teams will cook “Anything but gumbo” dishes for the public.

Faulk-Gonzales says after three decades they’ve started narrowing down just what makes the perfect gumbo, and perhaps surprisingly past champions have not included one old-school ingredient.

“We know what we like, and I think I am correct when I say that we have never had a winner who had okra,” says Faulk-Gonzales. “We don’t favor tomatoes either.”

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