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Recapping the 25th Annual Chili Cook-off: 

The 25th Anniversary of the American Cancer Society’s Chili Cook-Off event, sponsored by Trax Tire Pros, took place on Saturday, March 8th at the Grounds. After being indowntown Mobile for many years, the decision was made to make the move “west” in 2014. The 25th Anniversary seemed like the perfect time to enhance the event forparticipants and supporters. The Grounds (home of the Greater Gulf State Fair) served as an opportunity to grow the event. The move came with added benefits whichincluded much more space, the ability for teams to setup the day before and the possibility for teams to tailgate for the weekend. Everyone seemed to love the new venue and the day was an overall success with over $170,000 raised for the American Cancer Society’s fight against cancer!

 

Over 15,000 people got their fair share of chili as 75 teams competed for bragging rights for the best Chili in Mobile! Teams that took advantage of the new RV area were able to begin smoking their meat overnight at the Grounds. Whether cooking all meat chili, meat and beans, vegetarian/poultry or wild game, there were definitely some interesting recipes! Some of the more unique ingredients included elk, snapping turtle, and kangaroo. Taking top honors for the day was Faulkner State Community College. They were the overall winner of the 2014 American Cancer Society Chili Cook-off with a Meat and Beans Chili. Way to go Faulkner State Community College!

This year the children’s area was sponsored by Jesco Construction and children wereentertained all day with face painting, moonwalks, the NASCAR race simulator, local mascots and the Azalea Trail Maids. The famous Remote Control races were heating up all day toculminate with the final Championship race at 2 p.m. From the main stage, attendees were entertained by performances from the Faulkner State Sun Chiefs, Johnny No, and PEEK. Also, everyone enjoyed our home-town media personalities serving as emcees throughout the morning and into the afternoon: Devon Walsh, Bill Riales, and John Nodar from WKRG and Dan Brennan from 95 KSJ. The American Cancer Society was honored to have Chuck McNeil, one of the founding fathers of Chili Cook-Off, in attendance, as well! And when the chili was gone, the party continued with Superfunk Fantasy taking the stage after the awardceremony. They played into the evening at the delight of all in attendance, especially the kids that danced the afternoon away.

The American Cancer Society is grateful to everyone that made this year’s event such a success. It takes a great deal of planning from a devoted group of volunteers otherwise referred to as the “Chili Cook-off Committee,” to ensure the success of the event. Some of these individuals have been on the committee for over 12 years and the American Cancer Society thanks all of them for their dedication to the cause.

The American Cancer Society would also like to thank all of the generous sponsors who chose the Chili Cook-off as the recipient of their charitable dollars. Thank you to all the teams who participated this year as they are the mainstay of the event! Without their participation, there would be no “cook-off.” Lastly, the American Cancer Society would like to thank the community for embracing this event twenty five years ago and for embracing it in a bigger and better way twenty five years later. Thank you to everyone for helping the American Cancer society continue the fight by helping people Stay Well, Get Well, Find Cures and Fight Back! 

 

The Winners:

  • Best Overall: Faulkner State Community College
  • Best All Meat & Beans ChiliWinner: Faulkner State Community College
  • 1st runner up: Campaign-Sheriff Cochran
  • 2nd runner up: Sirius/Orion
  • Best All MeatWinner: Austal
  • 1st runner up: Volkert & Associates
  • 2nd runner up: IMC Cancer
  • Best Vegetarian/Poultry/Other ChiliWinner: Thompson Engineering
  • 1st runner up: Alabama Deep Sea Fishing Rodeo
  • 2nd runner up: Wintzell’ s Oyster House
  • Best Wild Game ChiliWinner: Trax Tire Pros
  • 1st runner up: Infirmary Health
  • 2nd runner up: Aseracare
  • Chili Change Award: Infirmary Health
  • Spirit of Chili Cook-Off Award: Faulkner State Community College
  • Most Tickets Sold: ExxonMobil
  • Best Decorated Tent: BAE Systems

 

From Event Chair, Alex Arendall:

There is no way to express in this space the appreciation that I have for everyone who took part in the 25thannual American Cancer Society Chili Cook Off this year. It was a privilege for me to carry the torch for those who first lit their burners for ACS 24 years ago. As a survivor, I know that the battle to beat cancer is certainly one that cannot be fought alone, and it is a rewarding experience to witness people from all walks of life working (and playing) toward that goal. The cooperation between our teams, sponsors, volunteers, and event organizers is what makes the event successful year after year and I thank you all for your support. I must give my thanks to the committee who worked harder than ever in a year of transition. I would be remiss if I did not also thank our patrons who came out to enjoy the day. It was apparent that all in attendance thoroughly enjoyed the chili and our new accommodations at The Grounds. With preparations alreadyunderway for 2015, I know that Chili is poised to achieve even more in the years to come. I hope thateveryone who participated will continue to encourage their friends, family, and co-workers to join in so that we all can make a bigger impact in the fight against cancer in the future. 

 


 

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