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June 4, 2013 > Who's this year's chili champ?

Who's this year's chili champ?

By Steve Taylor
Photos By Mary Lynn Pelican

Are your relatives just being polite or is your chili really the best around? You can find out how your recipe stacks up against cops, Rotarians, firefighters and dozens of pros by entering a pot of your best at the 22nd annual "Great Rotary Fremont Chili Cook Off." Just come to the parking lot of The Saddle Rack in Fremont this Sunday, June 9 with a $125 entry fee and your beans and meat stewed to spicy perfection; then let the people decide. A better plan might be showing up hungry to visit 30 booths serving People's Choice Chili concocted by Rotary Clubs, community and church groups, businesses, firehouses and individuals, benefitting local charities in the Tri-City area.

The Cook Off features not only chili tasting, but live music by Jewels Hanson & Diablo Road, Full Throttle and a live performance by Star Struck Theater. Kids are welcome to participate in arts and crafts activities. Attendees can watch Life Saving Demonstrations, Jaws-of-life Extractions and Fire Safety Presentations by the Local Firefighters Station 1689 as well as a "Tug-o-War" contest between Fire Houses. Food booths and lots of raffle prizes are planned during the day's activities.

Chili makers are dueling for awards in five categories including People's Choice, Best Chili (judges), Best Firehouse Chili, Best Rotary Chili, and even a Best Decorated Booth. Cook Off attendees will receive a booklet with one Voting Ticket, six tasting tickets and coupons. Attendees vote to determine the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Place winners and all participants are hoping to capture the 2013 People's Choice Championship, succeeding 2012 People's Choice Champions, Fremont Police Officers Association.

Proceeds from the event benefit clinics staffed by volunteer physicians, "Washington on Wheels," a mobile clinic and the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation, a designated charity of participating firefighters.

Organized by Area 3 Rotary Clubs of District 5170, the Chili Cook Off goal is $35,000, to benefit the above charities and two Firefighters charities to be named by winners of their competition. Admission is just $10 at the gate for adults and free for children six and under (does not include a tasting kit) Tickets can be purchased in advance for $8 online at

Great Rotary Fremont Chili Cook Off
Sunday, June 9
11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
The Saddle Rack
42011 Boscell Rd., Fremont

Tickets: $8 in advance, $10 at the gate

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