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Chamber Cooks Up Day Of Food And Fun

By Staff | Oct 13, 2010

The Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce is cooking up a feast of festivities for its 11th annual Chili-Fest to be held Oct. 30, rain or shine, on Main Street in New Martinsville.

While there are various activities starting with the 5K run registration is 10:30 at Christy’s parking lot with the run beginning at 11 a.m., the chili sales are from from noon to 4 p.m.

Scheduled eating events include the traditional chili sampling and taste off, a hot pepper eating contest sponsored by Uncle Bunk’s, a hot dog eating contest sponsored by Tasty Freez, and pizza eating contest.

Cash prizes will be awarded to chili vendors in three categories: businesses, non-profit organizations, and individuals. There will also be cash awards for the best table decorations, best costumes by vendors, and a People’s Choice Award. The taste-off includes any items with a Mexican base such as breads, salsa, pepper spreads, relishes, etc.

Other contests include a kid’s costume parade, a Little Mr. and Miss Chili Pepper contest for kids age five to seven, and a Prince and Princess Chili Pepper contest for kids age two to four.

This year there will also be a Chili-Fest pageant where judging is based on Chili-Fest themed attire and questions. Categories include the Golden Chili Pepper (age 60 and above), Mrs. Married, Miss Unmarried, Teen (age 16-19), Jr. Teen (age 13-15), and Junior (age eight-12). This pageant is scheduled for 10 a.m. Oct. 30.

All contestants must be present by 9:15 a.m. to receive their contestant numbers.

Chili-Fest pageant rules are as follows: no contestant can be pregnant, all contestants must follow age group rules, all pageant winners must stay for pictures, all contestants must act in a friendly manner to each other, and the winners of the pageants must stay to reign over Chili-Fest and get pictures with the Chili-Fest category winners.

There will also be children’s games and activities including jump castles and a corn hole tournament. By POPular Demand will create balloon art for children and adults alike. Other events and activities include the farmer’s market, a 5K run, live entertainment, Parlor City crafters, exhibitors, and vendors.

This year there are even more give-a-ways to the public. Each hour free raffle drawings will take place with prizes and gift certificates donated by local businesses including: A&M Solutions; ArtsLink, Inc.; Lite Rock 93R-FM/WXCR-FM radio; McDonald’s; Quinet’s Court Restaurant; RadioShack; S&S Jewelry; Subway No. 6173; Valley Cinema 3; Witschey’s Food and Pharmacy; and many more.

Additional sponsors include Bee Electric, City of New Martinsville, Occasions Florist and Gifts, Peoples Bank, Power Country 104, Paden City Tasty Freeze, Uncle Bunk’s, Wal-Mart, WesBanco, Wetzel County Center for Children and Families, Wetzel Valley Agencies, and West Virginia Northern Community College.

Food must be prepared and cooked in a health department-approved kitchen with verification. Food handlers classes are available at the Wetzel-Tyler Health Department.

Booth fees for chili vendors are $25. Booth space is also available for selling food items other than chili for $20 per space, arts and crafts for $20 per space, and exhibits are free but must register at the chamber office.

The deadline to register as a chili vendor contestant, crafter, or royalty pageant contestant is Oct. 22. There is no limit to the number of chili vendors.

For more information or to register call the Wetzel County Chamber of Contest at 304-455-3825, e-mail chamber@wetzelcountychamber.com, or visit www.wetzelcountychamber.com.