5th Annual Newton County Christmas for Kids Chili Cookoff

Happy Sunday! It has been a couple weeks, but it is finally time to report on the 5th Annual Newton County Christmas for Kids Chili Cookoff and Silent Auction. There is always a lot of work that goes in to prepping and planning for this event, but at the same time we have a lot of fun too. Just check out the photo above. We took a few minutes to go for a Train ride and don’t worry, we threw Mark out of the back. We’re fun like that.

This year we had 12 Chili entries and 4 Non Chili entries. Every year the event keeps growing and growing and the competition keeps getting stiffer. That’s a good thing. If you have ever thought about bringing your chili game to the cookoff, you better get to it!


Our judges keep changing every year, which is a good thing, too. The judges are put off in their own separate room, given samples of the chili, and then they judge. Sounds pretty simple, right? Not when there is a tie. That happened this year. They had to decide how to break the tie and went back to judging between the 2nd and 3rd place winners.

We had quite the team of workers getting chili dished up and taken over to the judges. It was quite the system in place and it worked like clockwork.

What to do while you wait for the judging to finish

While the judges were doing their thing, we had popcorn popping and great music by the band No Apparent Reason. Yes, you read that correctly, the band No Apparent Reason came back for the second year. They are awesome and if you haven’t heard them play, you’re totally missing out!

On top of all of that, we had the silent auction going on. Lots of fun goodies to try and appeal to everyone.

For the kids there was the Johnny Train and a bounce house.

The adults may have even had to partake in a train ride….

Usually the Pete picture takes place by the fence, but this year, he wound up in the house and had that same sad look on his face like he was missing out. Don’t worry, Pete wasn’t in the house long before he got to come out and rejoin the party.

And the thing you all came here to find out… Who won?

1st Place – Megan Shafer, 2nd Place – Joe Johnson, 3rd Place – Dave Winter, People’s Choice – Bryan Williams, and People’s Choice Non-Chili – Shirley Mann.

Thank you

We want to say Thank you to everyone who came out and participated in the Chili Cookoff and bid in the silent auction. As I’ve said before, the real winners are the kiddos of Newton County who wouldn’t have a Christmas otherwise. With that, pat yourself on the back because even with the threat of potential bad weather coming through, we were able to raise $3,000. The weather held off, the food was great, the band was fantastic, and a lot of fun was had by all.

Just remember, if you want to donate to the Newton County Christmas for Kids fund, please stop by one of the local fire department or ambulance departments in Newton County, come by Extreme Sports Scuba, or catch the bell ringers a little closer to Christmas. This is a wonderful time of year, let’s help make it a great one for the deserving children of Newton County.

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