Crowd packs fairgrounds for 2017 Great Chili Cook-off

Posted at 6:16 PM on Sep 30, 2017

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Story & Photos By Debbie Page

The 2017 Great Chili Cook-off drew a huge crowd to the Iredell County Fairgrounds on a bright fall Saturday afternoon. The Chunky Daddy Band and Kids in America rocked the crowd and got folks dancing. Attendees wandered the fairgrounds’ midway sampling creative chili recipes and browsing through vendors' wares and tasty eats and treats.

The Saks Orthodontics kids zone was huge hit, featuring bouncy houses, a bungee trampoline, inflatable slides, football toss, slides and other high energy activities. Folks enjoyed the larger venue and space at this year’s new venue.

Hospice & Palliative Care of Iredell County won The People's Choice Award for the fifth year in a row with their Out of this World Chili. The group members dressed in a 60’s vibe and interacted joyfully with passersby.

All money raised at the 8th annual event goes back to the local Rotary Clubs who hosted the event, including The Rotary Club of Mooresville, The Rotary Club of Mooresville-Lake Norman, The Rotary Club of Top of the Lake, and The Rotary Club of Troutman. Each club will distribute the money to charities of their choice.

Past recipients include Dove House, SCAN, Health Reach, My Sister’s House, and the School Backpack Project. More than 4,000 people attended each year in the past to help the clubs reach their goal of $50,000 to put back into the community.

“Over the years we have raised in excess of $300,000,” said Troutman Rotary’s Annette Lyon. “Our biggest year we raised over $50,000 in just five hours. This money goes to support local charities as well as international causes of Rotary International to eradicate disease and other needs.”

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