Time to claim your bragging rights

Gather your friends, family or co-workers. Form a team. Challenge another organization in your industry to join the fun. It’s time to compete for prizes, but more importantly, braggin’ rights, by entering the third Great Bowls of Fire Chili Cookoff.

This year’s event will be held from noon-3 p.m. Oct. 12 the Point Park in Parkersburg. Entertainment will be provided by Hit Parade and we are pleased to partner with the North End Tavern and Pepsi for cold beverages.

But we need tasty samples of chili to enjoy with our musical entertainment and hydrating beverages. This is where you come into play.

The Chili Cookoff is not just a Chamber event. It is open to the entire community. Not only are you invited to attend and enjoy the festivities and good food, but we welcome you to participate as a Chili Cookoff entrant.

Do you have a chili recipe that friends and family rave over? Then we need you to be one of our participants!

The cookoff is open to local churches, community and social organizations, area businesses, restaurants, police and fire departments, really any individual or team that wants to try their “ladle-filled” hand at this fun and tasty competition.

In fact, local mayors have already signed on to participate and make chili in a new Mayors Competition at the cookoff this year. The good-natured ribbing has already started with Marietta Mayor Joe Matthews claiming he will be the clear winner due to his years of cooking for the Marietta Fire Department. We shall see.

What’s required to be an entrant in the Great Bowls of Fire Chili Cookoff?

Just make four gallons of chili for the folks attending to try a small sample. This is not a sanctioned chili cookoff so your chili can be made off-site and brought to the event that day. And there are no constraints on the type of chili that can be entered into the cookoff vegetarian, green, spicy, beans only, white or the ever popular meat lover’s – are among options and types of chili we hope to taste at this event.

And of course, it wouldn’t be a cookoff without some healthy, and spicy, competition. A panel of judges will sample the various chilies for the $250 first-place award, as well as the $250 People’s Choice award. Also new this year is a Spirit Award for the chili entrant with the best decorations, theme, and good ol’ fun people. Who doesn’t like bragging rights? Just ask the staff of the Willows who won the People’s Choice award last year with their white chicken chili or Jonah Anderson and Scott Zyla who scored first place with the judges.

Interested in being an entrant for the annual Great Bowls of Fire Chili Cookoff? Give us a call today at the chamber office at 304-422-3588 or go to www.movchamber.org to register on-line. There is a $25 entry fee per chili recipe and includes all the fun for the cook and one helper. If you need us to supply your tent, the entry fee is $50 per entrant. The deadline to register is Sept. 13.

So October may seem light years away, but it will truly be here in the blink of an eye. And while the weather isn’t giving any indication that summer is over, it’s time to start planning your weekend activities and we hope that you will mark off your calendar to attend the fun at our event.

More details and information to follow – watch this column and our website for more information about the Great Bowls of Fire Chili Cookoff!

Visit this space every other Sunday for more Chamber news. We also invite you to call us at 304-422-3588, email us at info@movchamber.org, or stop by the Chamber office at 4091/2 Market St. in Parkersburg.

Jill Parsons is the president/CEO of the Chamber of Commerce fthe Mid-Ohio Valley.