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Calling all chili peppers: Chefs needed for annual event

Chili Challenge

The clock is ticking... Time to assemble peppers and beans, a few tomatoes, perhaps, and the other magic ingredients for the fourth annual Chili Challenge, a kick-off for the Hubbard County Food Shelf food and fundraising drive.

The event will be held over the noon hour Wednesday, March 6 at the Park Rapids American Legion.

Teams, individuals, businesses, civic organizations and church groups are invited to cook up a pot of chili, recruit samplers and serve the concoction.

Like the Dorset democracy, a buck buys a vote for the coveted "People's Choice" award.

Chili samplers will donate a dollar per small cupful of chili. Ballot box stuffing is welcome. Pre-event "votes" ($$) solicitation is legal and encouraged.

The chili chef/s earning top votes (money-wise) will gain celebrity status and a "People's Choice" plaque.

The chef claiming tops in taste bud tantalizing will earn People's Favorite commendations.

Names for the merry medley of spices, beans and meat/poultry/game or vegetarian are encouraged.

Musician Fran Gack is returning to entertain.

Bob Landrigan has worked his wizardry on wood to create a loon for the raffle drawing and

the Crazy Quilters have donated an exquisitely crafted quilt.

A decadent, delectable array of chocolates will cap the event, created by Enterprise chocolatiers.

All proceeds from the event will benefit the Hubbard County Food Shelf.

While the tone will be lighthearted, the mission holds gravity.

Food shelf coordinator Dave Long reports usage continues to rise.

The amount of food and funds raised in March is the basis for Minnesota FoodShare funding, so the greater the donations, the greater the amount of funding. The food shelf also applies for the Feinstein grant; that too is based on food and dollars raised in March and April.

Families and individuals may request aid from the food shelf once a month.

Chili chefs are asked to arrive with pots of chili (two gallons, please) by 10:30 a.m. March 6. Serving utensils will be provided. Crock pots or chaffers, please, no roasters as they draw too much power. An auxiliary pot can be warmed in the kitchen.

Last year's event raised $8,000 for the food shelf and hopes are high for another successful feed.

For more information or to sign up contact Jean at the Enterprise, 732-3364, or jruzicka@parkrapidsenter prise. com.

Registration forms with day-of-the-event info will also be available at the Enterprise.