Rain, wind can't cool chili lovers at cook-off
published on 10/26/2010
Despite intermittent showers and gusty winds, hundreds of chili lovers flocked to Centennial Park in Owasso Oct. 23 to enjoy world class chili, hayrides, bounce houses, contests, kids' games and "fair food."
"We were very pleased with the crowd; they just ignored the weather and had a great time," cook-off organizer John Fenrich told the Reporter. "Our chili cooks are a hearty bunch and they look at bad weather as a challenge, not a problem."
The annual Owasso Harvest Festival Chili Cook-Off attracted International Chili Society cooks from six states. The winners in the ICS competitions for red chili, green chili and salsa will represent Oklahoma at the 2011 International Chili Society World Championship Cook-Off next October.
"It was a great cook-off," said Bob Alexander, the defending ICS red chili champion. "The judges here know what good competition chili is all about, and Oklahoma will be well-represented at the World cook-off."
In addition to tasting chili, festival attendees enjoyed a variety of Harvest Festival activities and contests sponsored by the city of Owasso, the Owasso Family YMCA and Arvest Bank.
The event was a fundraiser for the Pride of Owasso High School Marching Band, as well. The band is raising money for their upcoming trip to the Rose Parade in Pasadena, Calif., in January 2011.
Tasting kits were sold, and after tasting all of the People's Choice chili, tasters could vote for their favorite.
Voted best People's Choice chili was the pot prepared by Ann Burney of Owasso, with her Extreme Mom's "Oklarado" Chili. The award for best People's Choice salsa went to Debbie Williams from Owasso, with Crash Course Classy Chassis Chili.
Showmanship/Booth honors were won by the Big Foot Bar-BQ booth from Claremore.
International Chili Society winners were Don Eastep, Harrison, Ark.. for red chili, Bob Alexander, Tulsa, for green chili and Jim Stoddard, Coppell, Texas., for salsa.
A special award for the first-time ICS cook garnering the most points was given to Robbie Hixon of Norman for his Hoagy-Style Competition BBQ Chili.
Little chili lovers were also competing for Little Miss Chili Pepper and Little Mr. Hot Sauce honors. Crowned Little Miss Chili Pepper by Miss Owasso Yvonne Tallent was Makayla Keirsey, daughter of Britney Keirsey. Proclaimed Little Mr. Hot Sauce was Coda Snell, son of David and Karla Snell. The contests were sponsored by Tippi Toes Dance and Sprouts Play Café.
Sponsors for the Owasso Harvest Festival Chili Cook-Off were the Owasso Reporter, P&K Equipment, city of Owasso, Owasso Family YMCA, Arvest Bank, Family First Chiropractic, VCA Owasso Animal Medical Center, Hampton Inn and Suites, Martial Arts Academy, Sports Clips, Anytime Fitness, Mail This! Copy That!, Quick Trip, Madalan's Hallmark, RCB Bank, Office Depot, Drake Chiropractic, J&K Media Resources, Party Depot, Catoosa Small Animal Hospital, AAA Insurance - Levi Molini, St. John's Hospital, Tippi Toes Dance - Broken Arrow/Owasso.
Posted: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 11:02 am | Updated: 11:10 am, Tue Oct 26, 2010.
Chili Verde winner
Tulsan Bob Alexander’s green chili took the top spot in the ICS Chili Verde competition. By Matt Roberts/Owasso Reporter