Sept. 22 at RUMC
Cooks, connoisseurs welcome at Reynoldsburg Chili Festival
Chili will rule at the second annual Reynoldsburg Chili Festival as cooks and connoisseurs converge on the south lawn of Reynoldsburg United Methodist Church.
The Chili Festival is slated from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22, at the church, 1636 Graham Road.
The family-friendly festival offers free admission and free chili-tasting.
"We want to provide a family-friendly event for the people of Reynoldsburg," said Tasha Levert, pastor of evangelism. "This event is free for the community to come, bring their family and have a great time."
The day includes a chili contest, children's crafts, live music and a motorcycle cruise-in.
Levert said more than a dozen cooks have registered to offer their chili at the event, but more are welcome, if they register by 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 21.
"We have a maximum number of 24, so if we reach that, we will have to close entries," she said.
Melanie Farkas, communication coordinator for the church, said the entry free for chili cooks is $30, which includes one chili competition entry and two 2012 Chili Festival T-shirts.
Prizes will be awarded for most creative name, best presentation, best overall chili and most popular chili.
She said a chili entrant team must consist of at least two people, one to dispense chili into tasting cups and one to serve the public. The setup area will open at 10 a.m. and cooks must provide a minimum of five gallons of chili.
Rules and more information are available online at reynoldsburgchili.com.
There is no fee for motorcycle entries for the cruise-in, but motorcycles must register between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Judging begins at 2 p.m. for various categories, including best American, best import, best paint and more.
Proceeds from the event will benefit the HEART Food Pantry, a part of the Mid-Ohio Foodbank network of food pantries, serving the greater Reynoldsburg area bounded by Hamilton Road, Interstate 70, Havens Corners Road and the eastern Franklin County line.
Farkas said last year's event raised enough to put 1,500 meals on the tables of needy families.
HEART Executive Director Tom Aakus said he is "thrilled to have the support of the festival" for a second year.
"It's a wonderful thing to do right now, because there is such a great need," he said.
HEART representatives will be at the festival to share more information and to take donations.
Farkas said Buckeye fans need not miss the game: A television tent will be provided.
"We definitely think that getting families together for a family-friendly event is a great thing to do on a Saturday," she said. "We wanted a nice, safe event for parents and kids to come out and have a good time."
She said the Reynoldsburg United Methodist Church is a Bible-based, Christ-centered community of faith and a member of the West Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church.
Church membership is 2,400 with total constituents numbering more than 3,800. For more information, visit the church website at rumc.org.