Culinary Demonstration with Chef John Rivers
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2019, 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM, CENTER STAGE
Join us at Center Stage as John Rivers, Founder and CEO of 4 Rivers Smokehouse dazzles us with his love of barbeque!
A meet and greet with the Chef to follow his demonstration.
About John Rivers
Before founding 4 Rivers Smokehouse, Founder & CEO John Rivers served as president of a $1.5-billion-dollar healthcare company. After helping raise much needed funds for a young girl battling cancer, John ultimately left the corporate world and started a “Barbecue Ministry” in his hometown of Winter Park, Fla. where he cooked out of his garage for schools, churches, charities, civic organizations and others in need. After gaining widespread local appeal for his barbecue, Rivers opened the first 4 Rivers Smokehouse in Winter Park on October 26, 2009. As he explains it, “When I first started the ministry in my garage, I never imagined that it would grow into the company we’re blessed with today.” A decade later, 4 Rivers has 14 Smokehouses throughout Florida and Georgia, with each smoking more than 15,000 pounds of meat per week. Also part of the 4R family are The COOP, 4R Cantina Barbacoa located at Disney Springs, two 4 Rivers walkup venues a ESPN Wide World of Sports as well as eateries at Camping World Stadium, Spectrum Stadium and Raymond James Stadium.
Rivers has received national recognition for his style of barbeque by leading media outlets such as Southern Living, Food & Wine, The Daily Meal, FSR Magazine, MSN and more. He has also had the honor to cook at the prestigious James Beard House in New York City twice, and has enjoyed participating at the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival and the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival for eight consecutive years. In 2013, John authored his first book, The Southern Cowboy Cookbook, which can be purchased at all 4 Rivers Smokehouse locations as well as Barnes & Noble, Costco and Amazon.com. He has also has launched a line of 4R retail and manufactured products currently available at Publix, Fresh Market and are also distributed nationally by partners such as Sysco, Aramark and Amazon.
Rivers is a graduate of Florida State University’s College of Business, where he currently serves on the Board of Governors. He also chairs The 4R Foundation, a nonprofit organization that maintains a focus on supporting and caring for the communities that the 4R Restaurant Group serves. In 2018, The 4R Foundation donated valuable funds to 650 local organizations, non-profits and churches. Additionally, Cows ’n Cabs, the brand’s signature annual charity even has raised more than $635,000 for local charities since the inaugural event in 2012. Rivers lives in Winter Park with his wife Monica and two children, Jared and Cameron.