Chili, boilo contest raises money for cancer telethon
Outside, rain drops bubbled in potholes. Occasional gusts of wind were strong enough to sway traffic lights. Passersby tucked their chins against the rain.
But inside the doors of the East End Fire Company, all was color, light, happy faces and raucous noise. What better way to fight the winter blues than to gather together for a Chili and Boilo Cook Off contest?
And what better way to do that, than to do it to benefit an important cause, the Carbon/Tamaqua American Cancer Society. For six years, Tamaqua’s East End Fire Company and American Hose Company #1 have joined forces to hold the event.
“We thank everybody for coming out,” said event co-chair Brian Connely. He and Tom McCarroll are the event co-chairs. The two took turns acting as unofficial emcees, announcing contest winners.
“There were 18 entries for chili and 17 for boilo,” said Randy Loar, last year’s Judges’ Choice winner for chili. “The judges vote, and the people vote, so there are two categories for each, plus categories for special and traditional.”
Entrants with chili or boilo paid $20 to register; tasters paid $10. The awards, done by Del Rose Awards, Lansford, were attractively-painted cutting boards, cut in the shape of bottles. Award winners were: For Chili, Special, judges’ choice Matt Coccio and people’s choice Jared Stahler; For Chili Traditional, judges’ choice Donette Miller and people’s choice Jared Stahler; for Boilo Special, judges’ choice Bill Navitsky and people’s choice Brian Connely; for Boilo Traditional, judges’ choice Jim Mansell and people’s choice, a tie between Charles Connely and Bob Ruggeri.