Mt. Vernon Register-News


October 1, 2012

Chili Cook Off seeks contestants

MT. VERNON — — This year’s Chili Cook Off held by the United Methodist Children’s Home will take place during the Mt. Vernon Fall Festival on Oct. 20.

This is the fourth year for the UMCH fundraiser, and entries are being taken now for cook off contestants, UMCH Development Coordinator Marcus Holland said. No entry fee is required.

“It’s a fun event even if a person has never competitively cooked before. It’s something anybody can do and help raise awareness,” Holland said.

Space is limited to the first 15 entries, though a waiting list will be kept if needed. Awards will be given for “official” judging and a people’s choice prize. The first place winner of official judging will receive $100 and have their chili featured on the menu of the Waffle Company for the entire month of November, Holland said.

Other prizes include:

  • 2nd Place Official Judging $75
  • 3rd Place Official Judging $50
  • 1st Place People's Choice $75
  • 2nd Place People's Choice $50
  • Best Decorated Booth Award (to be decided by the Chili Cook Off Committee)

Holland said official judges are kept secret though in the past they have included restaurant chefs and other active members of the community.

To participate in the people’s choice award, people will pay $3 to taste all entries, Holland said. Proceeds go toward offsetting costs for a number of UMCH programs that serve roughly 1,200 children and youth.  

Contestants will be required to start cooking on site and should be ready for judging by 3 p.m., following the Fall Festival parade. Cook off booths will be located at Jordan Street and Ninth Street.

To enter the contest or to get more information, contact Holland at 618-242-1070 ext. 234 or visit

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