Chili cookoff helps charities for 24th straight year

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

A tasty tradition that also assists charities returned to the K of C Hall in Amherstburg Saturday night.

The 24th annual Charity Chili Cookoff brought an estimated crowd of 175 people out with eight teams vying for not only bragging rights, but some cash for their charities. A final total of what was raised was not available as of press time, but Brad Bondy’s Re/Max team took home top spot with their share going to the Miracle League of Amherstburg.

The 2017 Charity Chili Cookoff crowned its champs Saturday night at the K of C Hall in Amherstburg. From left: Diane Schultz, Betty Bondy, Heather Harber, Brad Bondy, Luisa Bondy, Tim McAllister, Winston McAllister, Brian Bondy and Gisele Sutton.

The 2017 Charity Chili Cookoff crowned its champs Saturday night at the K of C Hall in Amherstburg. From left: Diane Schultz, Betty Bondy, Heather Harber, Brad Bondy, Luisa Bondy, Tim McAllister, Winston McAllister, Brian Bondy and Gisele Sutton.

The Royal LePage team finished second with Gisele Sutton representing them Saturday night. Their proceeds will go to the House Youth Centre. Coming in third was the Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission.

Other teams this year included the Catholic Women’s League, Maria’s Restaurant, the St. John’s Building Corporation (K of C), Legion Br. 157 and Carol Charette of Carol’s Unisex Hair Salon. A ninth team dropped out at the last minute.

Organizer and “chili captain” Ron Fryer said 175 people was a good number and pointed out all proceeds are reinvested back into the Amherstburg community.

“We don’t keep a thing,” said Fryer.

Fryer pointed out there were many new teams this year, with familiar entrants like Cindy London and the K of C Ladies Auxiliary retiring from competition. The band “Back to Back” was also on hand to provide entertainment after the meal.

The new teams helped bring people into the K of C and find out what the organization is all about, said Fryer. He said the K of C “is a good club” and that volunteering there is enjoyable. Fryer underlined the importance of giving back to the community.

Jessica Field and Kelsey Kciuk from the St. John Building Corporation (K of C Hall) were just one of the teams serving up chili Saturday night.

Jessica Field and Kelsey Kciuk from the St. John Building Corporation (K of C Hall) were just one of the teams serving up chili Saturday night.

“I think by volunteering your time, it keeps you young and healthy. It feels good to help out,” said Fryer.

The reason the event has lasted 24 years was because it is an enjoyable one, Fryer believed.

“You make it fun,” he said. “People like to cook. People like to compete.”

Bondy said he brought roughly 30 people to the cookoff and said he enjoys giving back to the community as well.

“(The town) has been so good to me,” said Bondy.

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