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Downtown LaGrange to host 29th annual chili cook-off

Anyone who believes they make the best chili around will soon have the opportunity to prove it.

Downtown LaGrange will host its 29th annual Chili Cook-Off on Oct. 26 in Lafayette Square.

“This is one of my favorite events,” said Barbie Watts, director of promotions and marketing for the Downtown LaGrange Development Authority. “We will usually have a great turnout with over 2000 people and people look forward to it all year. The contestants look forward to competing against each other.”

Watts also said this is a great way for companies and organizations to increase awareness about their business or cause.

“It is a way for some of the new businesses to come out and be contestants in the contest,” Watts said. “That’s a good way for them to meet the community.”

The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and costs $35 to enter a team. For those ready to taste all the chili they can, tickets cost $5 for a taste cup at every booth.

“The fall weather makes everybody so excited to get outside and enjoy the beautiful fall day,” Watts said.

In addition to the Chili Cook-Off, there will be activities for children, including a children’s costume contest held from noon until 2 p.m.

Registration for the contest is held from 10:45 a.m. until 11:45 a.m. in front of the show mobile stage. Trophies will be awarded to the best boy and best girl costumes in each age category from newborn to 12 months, one to four years, five to nine years and 10 to 12 years. 

Children will also be able to visit the Jungle Bus and trick-or-treat downtown from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Market on Main vendors will hold a fall farmer’s market at Flagpole Park from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.

“It’s a lot of fun to see the children in their costume,” Watts said. “It’s just a fun time, and kids enjoy it because it’s all about Halloween.”

Those who buy tickets to the event will also be able to vote on which chili is their favorite.

“I think that’s fun for people that they get to get to pick,” Watts said.

All the money raised from the cook-off, after event expenses are paid, will go to each competitor.

“The money that’s left over is divided amongst all of the participants and then they have selected charities that are meaningful that they give the money to,” Watts said. 

“That’s really cool to me that it can benefit so many people.”

Watts said they are still looking for competitors to enter into the cook-off.

To register, visit the events section on downtownlagrange.com or contact barbiew@downtownlagrange.com.