Chili Festival also includes Hoopla Parade


The 10th annual Simon Kenton Chili Cook Off Festival on Saturday will include live entertainment, children’s games and a day full of contests. Not only will the day include 30 contestants vying for the first prize of $1,000 for the best chili, but there will also be a hot pepper eating contest with a $200 first prize.

There will also be a Suck, Chew and Blow contest with a $25 first prize, best salsa contest with a $100 first prize and a corn hole tournament with first place taking home $100.

In addition, you may vote for your favorite chili by purchasing “beads” for $1. The winner will receive a “People’s Choice Chili” trophy. For those entering the “Best Salsa” contest, entries are to be dropped off at the courthouse stage by 10:30 a.m. Entries must be in a disposable container, with recipe and registration form attached. Please check the web site for details and forms:

If contests are not your “thing,” enjoy the Hoopla Parade at noon, which will include the Dayton Antioch Shriners with their miniature vehicles, and a pet parade, sample the contestants’ chili, watch a WPKO live remote broadcast, and rock to the sounds of the live entertainment on stage until 6 p.m.

Food trucks will offer barbecue, pizzas, hot dogs, chili, fries and much much more – something for everyone. In addition, there will be vendors selling pumpkins, jewelry, candles, snack foods and fall decorations. To encourage family attendance, children’s games will be open in the 100 block of East Court St. from 1-4 p.m. Games will include the bouncy castle, face painting, hair color/tattoo, and balloon creations. The “Dunk Tank,” a huge hit in 2015, is returning with Nick Mescher, Heather Downs and Joanne Petty running the show. Beginning at 1 p.m., those volunteering to be “dunked” are Steve Upchurch, Scott Fannin, Aileen McLaughlin, Honorable Judge Gil Weithman, Paul Waldsmith and Brian Cordial. Don’t miss your chance to “dunk” your favorite or not so favorite person.

Main Street north of the square to Church Street will be closed to vehicular traffic at 6 a.m. The street will open for the Hoopla Parade featuring the Antioch Shriners at noon and close again from 1-6 p.m. The stage will be on the courthouse steps and live entertainment featuring “The Temps” will begin at approximately 1:30 p.m. The emcee of the event, Taylor Armstrong, will coordinate all activities from the stage and entertain the crowd with spontaneous on the spot interviews. Committee members wearing red t-shirts will be available to answer any questions. Bring your lawn chair and enjoy a day of food, fun and entertainment.

Schedule of Events

7-10 a.m. – Vendors and Cookers Set-Up – Must enter through Church Street to access Main Street

8 a.m. – Urbana Fire truck sirens will signal cookers to begin cooking.

7 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Welcome/Information Tent Open – Opposite the Courthouse Stage – Court/Main streets.

10:30 a.m. – Salsa contestants pick up application at the Welcome Tent or print from web site ahead of time. Application and salsa to be turned in at courthouse stage by 10:30

11 a.m. to 7 p.m. – Beer Garden Open

11 a.m. to 2 p.m. – Registration for Corn Hole Tournament – Limit 32 Team Registration for Pepper Eating Contest (limit 16 entries) Registration for Suck, Chew and Blow Contest (limit 10 entries)

11 a.m. – Judging of salsa entries on Courthouse Stage Sale of People’s Choice Beads begin – $1 each or 12/$10 at Welcome Tent

Noon – Hoopla Parade/Pet Parade Begins

1-4 p.m. – Children’s area open – East Court Street

1 p.m. – Dunk Tank opens

1:30 p.m. – Salsa contest winners announced at Court House Stage

1:30-6 p.m. – Live Music by “The Temps” to begin on stage (approximately)

2 p.m. – Chili contestants turn in chili to judges (Masonic Temple) contestant chili samples open to public (free)

2-4 p.m. – WPKO radio station live broadcast

2:30 p.m. – Corn Hole Tournament Begins – W. Court Street – behind beer garden

3 p.m. – Suck, Chew and Blow contest begins – Courthouse Stage People’s Choice Balloting Ends – Containers picked up by committee

3:30 p.m. – Hot Pepper Eating contest – Courthouse Stage

4:30 p.m. – Announce winners of chili cook-off, pepper eating contest,people’s choice and best decorated booth

6 p.m. – Festival ends until next year

Approximately 3 feet tall, this Chili Cook Off trophy created by Vince Gonzalez is on display with other trophies at the Coppertop Restaurant. The first place winner also takes home $1,000. 3 feet tall, this Chili Cook Off trophy created by Vince Gonzalez is on display with other trophies at the Coppertop Restaurant. The first place winner also takes home $1,000.

By Sandy Gonzalez

Information provided by event organizers

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