21st annual Charity Chili Cookoff wins big for charities

 

 

The Amherstburg Knights of Columbus Council 2110 held its 21st annual Charity Chili Cookoff Saturday night with the K of C Ladies Auxiliary winning top prize. Mary Jane Murphy and Dorothy Thrasher accept the first prize plaque from Grand Knight Jim Fryer and event organizer Mike Specht.

The Amherstburg Knights of Columbus Council 2110 held its 21st annual Charity Chili Cookoff Saturday night with the K of C Ladies Auxiliary winning top prize. Mary Jane Murphy and Dorothy Thrasher accept the first prize plaque from Grand Knight Jim Fryer and event organizer Mike Specht.

Sandra Paisley of Community Living Essex County (Channel) serves some of her vegetarian chili .

Sandra Paisley of Community Living Essex County (Channel) serves some of her vegetarian chili .

By Ron Giofu

 

Approximately 200 people converged on the K of C Hall in Amherstburg Saturday to not only eat chili, but to help raise funds for local charities and causes.

The 21st annual Charity Chili Cookoff was held Saturday night with nine charities and non-profit organizations trying to impress the judges and the crowd in an effort to try and net a portion of the prize money.

“It’s the way we organize it,” said organizer Mike Specht. “I send 20 tickets to each of the competitors. If they sold those tickets or more, the more people they get out.”

Specht said it’s a way for organizations to attempt to get more votes for the People’s Choice Award.

“It’s a fun thing,” he said. “People enjoy coming out.”

There were nine competitors this year, Specht noted, up one from last year. There were almost ten entries but one group backed out, he added.

Entries included the K of C Ladies Auxiliary, Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157, the Amherstburg Heroes Athletic Club, the Amherstburg Knights of Columbus, Community Living Essex County (Channel), Steve Boussey on behalf of the Miracle League of Amherstburg, Relay for Life, Amherstburg Community Services and Cindy London, who was attempting to raise money for Jumpstart.

Specht said the attendance of roughly 200 people was “a good number.

“Last year was a little bit less than that,” he stated. “Other years, we sell out.”

Judges included Grand Knight Jim Fryer, K of C chef Bill Gyori, Mary Jane Murphy, and councillors Diane Pouget and Bart DiPasquale.

While actual winnings were not tabulated as of press time, the K of C Ladies Auxiliary won first prize and will devote their 50 per cent of the evening’s proceeds to the St. Vincent de Paul Society. In second place was Steve Boussey and the Miracle League with the Miracle League getting 30 per cent of the pot. Third place, and ten per cent of the overall prize money, went to last year’s champions, the Amherstburg Heroes. Cindy London won the People’s Choice award with Jumpstart getting her ten per cent of the evening’s proceeds.

Specht added that the band Wheelin’ provided the entertainment with the band reaching out to him requesting to be part of the evening.

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