Jemison FFA Alumni to host Chili Cook-off

Published 11:01 am Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The third annual Jemison FFA Alumni Chili Cook-off will be held on Feb. 4 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the auditorium at the Jemison Municipal Complex.

Judges will be on hand to taste the entries and a winner will be selected after factors of presentation and taste are considered.

However, the judges are not the only ones able to enjoy the homemade creations, as the public is invited to attend with $10 allowing them all-you-can-eat chili, as well as a drink and a dessert.

The entry fee to enter a chili recipe is $20 per person and $10 for students looking to get involved.

“You never know what will happen,” said Phil Rachels, Jemison FFA Alumni President. “The first year we had a student win the overall prize.”

Participants can show up and enter the day of the competition or mail pre-enter by mailing their name, age and name of chili to 2680 County Road 107, Randolph, AL 36792.

Contestants are asked to show up with their chili prepared and ready to be tasted by 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 4. Trophies will be awarded to the top selections in both adult and student categories.

“Arrive ready to be judged,” Rachels said.

Based on the first two years of the cook-off, Rachels expects about 200 people and around 10 different chili concoctions to choose from.

According to Rachels, though chili remains the main focus, the event has become so much more.

This year, fried homemade pies will be cooked for those in attendance, while a silent auction and bingo will also be taking place.

“It is a chance for fellowship with people that you haven’t seen in a while,” Rachels said.

The proceeds from the event will help fund trips taken by the Jemison High School FFA, such as the 2016 Sunbelt Ag Expo that took place in October in Moultrie, Ga.

Rachels was a member of the FFA in high school 17 years ago. He credits Jemison High School Agriscience teacher Clay Mims for being one the major reason for the current healthy nature of the program.

“They are much more active than when I was in there, and it just continues to grow,” Rachels said. “He [Mims] keeps them going and they stay real busy.”