Chili Cook-Off, Hoopla Parade set for Saturday

By Sandy Gonzalez

The 13th Annual Simon Kenton Chili Cook Off Festival on Sept. 28 in Urbana will include live entertainment, children’s games and a day full of contests. Not only will the day include the 21 contestants vying for the first prize of $1,000 for the best chili, but there will also be a hot pepper eating contest, Suck, Chew and Blow contest, best salsa contest, Dunk Tank, and a corn hole tournament. In addition, you may vote for your favorite chili by purchasing “beads” for $1. The winner will receive a “Peoples Choice Chili” trophy and “bragging rights”!

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. []

Start your day with a pancake breakfast being served by the Masonic Fraternity from 7 to 11 a.m. at the Masonic Temple, 222 N. Main St. All donations go to the Champaign County Special Olympics program.

If contests are not your “thing,” enjoy the Hoopla parade, which will include a pet parade and the Dayton Antioch Shriners with their miniature vehicles, sample the contestants’ chili, watch a 106.9 “The Bull” live remote broadcast, and rock to the sounds of the LA band. Food trucks will have lots of food choices and vendors will be selling jewelry, candles, snack items and fall decor.

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 at 12:00 pm and close again from 1:00 – 6:00 pm.. The stage will be on the courthouse steps and live entertainment featuring “”The LA Band” will begin at approximately 1:30 pm.. 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 “staff” t-shirts will be available to answer any questions. Bring your lawn chair and enjoy a day of food, fun and entertainment!

The Monument Square Event is made possible through the generosity of Orbis Corporation with additional support from Columbia Gas, Medicine Shoppe, Parker Trutec, Sterling Restoration, The Peoples Savings Bank, True Inspection Services and Ultra Met.

Schedule of events

– 7-10 a.m. Vendors and Cookers Registration/Set-up – N. MAIN ST-MUST ENTER THROUGH CHURCH ST.

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

– 8 a.m. Urbana Fire truck sirens will signal cookers to begin cooking; – Salsa contestants pick up application at Salsa table on Court House Stage or web site

– 10:30 a.m. Deadline for Salsa and applications to be turned in at Court House Stage

– 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Beer Garden Hours

– 11 a.m.-? Registration for Corn Hole Tournament – Limit 32 Teams

– 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Registration for Suck, Chew and Blow Contest (limit 10 entries); Registration for Pepper Eating Contest (limit 16 entries)

– 11 a.m. Judging of salsa entries on Courthouse Stage, Sale of People’s Choice Beads opens – $1.00 ea or 12/$10.00- Welcome Tent

– Noon Hoopla Parade / Pet Parade Begins

– 1-4 p.m. Children’s area open – East Court Street; Dunk Tank Opens (1-4)

(1-3 p.m. First Baptist Church, 401 N. Main St., invites the community to the church to enjoy bounce houses, games and crafts for the kids, plus free snacks for everyone)

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

– 1:30-5 p.m. Live Music by “The LA Band” – Court House Stage

– 2 p.m. Chili Contestants Turn in Chili to Judges ( Masonic Temple); Contestant Chili Samples Available to Public (free)

– 2-4 p.m. 106.9 “The Bull” radio station live broadcast

– 2 p.m. Corn Hole Tournament Begins – W. Court St. – behind beer garden –

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

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

– 4:30 p.m. Announce winners of Chili Cook-off, Pepper Eating contest, People’s Choice and Best Decorated Booth

– 5 p.m. IT’S A WRAP…

By Sandy Gonzalez

Submitted on behalf of the Monument Square District.

Submitted on behalf of the Monument Square District.