Chili, times two

By Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal

Last year, the 11th annual Chili Fest in downtown Tupelo drew 1,300 folks between the lunch and the dinner crowd. This year, Amory organizers will be happy with any number of people who attend the first-ever Chili Cook-off and Fall Fest.
Amory’s event is Saturday from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Frisco Park in downtown Amory.
“This is our first year for this and we were just trying to come together with something new and different for the fall season to go with our retail event,” said Lorie Bryant, manager of Amory Main Street Inc. “We’re just hoping to generate some buzz about downtown. Wednesday through Saturday, our local retailers will be having special promotions at their stores.”
The Main Street Heat Chili Cook-off and Fall Fest has 17 teams registered so far. The deadline to sign up is Friday at 5 p.m. Cost is $25 per team or $100 for a corporate sponsorship..
“We have 17 teams registered so far and we have room for more,” Bryant said.
First-, second-, and third-place winners will receive cash prizes and trophies; there will also be awards for spirit competition, people’s choice and the most unusual chili.
The band Artwork will provide live entertainment and there will be pumpkin painting, rock climbing and other activities for kids.
The cost of the event is $5, which includes tasting tickets, plus your choice of dinner: a bowl of chili, a hotdog, a chilidog or Frito pie. Or, you can pay $3, which includes tasting tickets only.
“We hope to make this an annual event,” Bryant said. “The first year, you have to see what works and what has to be tweaked.”
5 new teams in Tupelo
The 12th Annual Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association Annual Chili Fest will be Thursday, Oct. 13. The lunch event is from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and the dinner event runs from 5 to 10 p.m.
“We have 30 teams signed up so far and we do have room for just a few more,” said Allie West, program associate for the Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association. “We have at least five new teams this year and we’re excited to have them.”
The deadline to register is Friday. The cost to enter is $40 for a team of four; additional team members can be added for $10 each.
Live entertainment will be provided at lunch and FoShorchestra will perform in the evening.
Lunch tickets are $5 and include a bowl of chili, a drink and fixings from Cotton Bowl Catering (Bar-B-Q by Jim). Tickets for the evening event are $10 for adults and include the chili with fixings, drink and tasting tickets to sample chili prepared by the different teams. Evening tickets are $5 for children 12 and under.
Trophies will be awarded for best chili (first and second place), most original recipe, most unique taste, best presentation, team spirit, best costumes, most creative tent, most original theme and the people’s choice.
“Last year, we planned for 300 at lunch and we had way more than that,” West said. “We had even more that night. I think it was 1,300 people for the day, for lunch and dinner combined.”
ginna.parsons@journalinc.com

In Tupelo
What: 12th Annual Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association Annual Chili Fest.

When: 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13.

Where: On Broadway between Main and Troy streets in downtown Tupelo.

Music: Live entertainment at lunch; FoShorchestra will perform that night.

Cost: $5 for lunch; $10 for adults in the evening and $5 for children 12 and under.

Info: Call 841-6598.

In Amory
What: Main Street Heat Chili Cook-off and Fall Fest.

When: 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

Where: Frisco Park in downtown Amory in front of City Hall.

Music: Live entertainment by Artwork.

Cost: $5 includes tasting tickets, plus your choice of dinner of a bowl of chili, a hotdog, a chilidog or Frito pie; $3 includes tasting tickets only.

Info: 256-8700.