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Joyce Endee

Two separate chili cookoffs, plenty of tastings and festivities for all 9th Annual Cinco de Marzo chili Cookoff set for March 5

January 20, 2011
Calling all Chefs two simultaneous chili cookoffs

There will be two cookoffs happening throughout the day. Decades will be host to the International Chili Society (ICS) sanctioned Chili cookoff event under the tents in the parking lot starting at 11 .am. Winning this ICS sanctioned district cookoff qualifies the chef to compete for $25,000 in cash prizes and awards at the 2011 ICS's World Championship Chili Cookoff to be held in Manchester on Sept. 30 through Oct. 2. To compete in the Cinco de Marzo Chili Cookoff, chefs must be a member of the ICS. Membership information is found at http://www.chilicookoff.com/Membership/membership_signup.asp?new=yes. Chefs will compete in three different categories of chili offerings including Traditional Red Chili, Chili Verde, and Salsa. First, second and third place awards will be offered in each category. Cash awards will be given for the Traditional Red Chili category only. Limited tastings from this event will be available for the public under the tent at Decades. Rules of the competition, along with descriptions for different qualifying chilis and all contest prize information can be found at www.mtwashingtonvalley.org. Simply click on the Cinco de Marzo logo on the homepage.

Additionally and at the same time, a second non-ICS sanctioned People's Choice chili cookoff will take place in three locations throughout North Conway Village with chili chefs vying for the People's Choice award. The day of chili feasting will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. when chefs offer tastings in the Flatbread Company/New England Ski Museum at Eastern Slope Inn, Horsefeather's and Rafferty's Restaurant and Pub. People's Choice Cash Awards will be offered to the first, second and third place chili chef who receives the most votes from chili tasters. Recognition awards will be given for best themed display, best crazy hat and best corn bread. The People's Choice Award is separate from the ICS sanctioned competition. All chefs are invited to participate and ICS membership is not required.

After a day of chili tastings, the party moves to Decades for Fiesta After Five with a "Mr Hot Sauce" contest to raise money for breast cancer screenings through The White Mountain Community Health Center. Vote by tucking your contribution into their bright Mexican sashes or buying tickets for the tequila and Margarita tastings. Continue the tasty day by ordering off Decades new Mexican Fiesta menu.

Take the Chilly Chili Stroll

To round out the chilly chili stroll North Conway village businesses will offer chili-inspired activities. Have your el passporte stamped at participating businesses, and you will qualify to become a People's Choice judge plus be included in a drawing for a "HOT Summer Vacation Giveaway", five nights for a family of four at Eastern Slope Inn with meals and activities, too. There will be a Chilean Wine Tasting at Wine Thyme and Cinco de Marzo wine tastings at Vintner's Cellar Winery. Tuckerman Brewing Company's Pale Ale, Headwall Alt and 6288 Stout tasting at Horsefeathers. Wander into The White Mountain Cupcakery, Bavarian Chocolate Haus and the Met for chili inspired sweets and coffee, then visit Joe Jones Ski, Sun & Sports for some Hot Chillis Gear at a great price. Zeb's General Store will be featuring the largest selection of Hot Sauces, Salsa's and Chili Caramels, Spruce Hurricane will have Old Gringo Boots and Cowboy Hats to offer appropriate casual wear for chili tasters. The Cranmore Cranapalooza will take place all day with Mexican inspired fun games, prizes and 2 for 1 S'mores or Cotton Candy at Fred's Shed. Take a few runs down the mountain coaster or the tubing park and watch a few races at the annual Buddy Werner Race.

Tickets and el passaportes for the Cinco de Marzo Chili Cookoff and Chilly Chili Stroll are available at the Mt. Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce prior to the event, then throughout the day at participating venues (Flatbread Company, Horsefeathers, Rafferty's, Decades). Tickets are $15 for adults and $7 for children 12 and under. Children five and under are free with a paid adult. Tickets may be pre-purchased by calling 800-367-3364. Tickets can also be pre-purchased by mail, fax or through PayPal. Download purchase forms online at http://www.mtwashingtonvalley.org/pg_mwv/pg_mwv_65.cfm.

For complete information, downloadable registration packets and all contest rules visit www.mtwashingtonvalley.org and click on the chili cookoff logo. Questions for organizers can be answered by calling 356-5701.

Martin Lord & Osman
Salmon Press
Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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