Senior Connection hosting chili cook-off, health fair

Published 4:44 pm Monday, January 21, 2019

By J.R. TIDWELL / Editor

While the temperature may have plummeted below freezing on Jan. 20, things will soon be heating up at Senior Connection in Clanton.

The organization will be hosting its annual Health Fair and Chili Cook-off on Feb. 2 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Anyone interested in submitting an entry into the chili cook-off may find an application and rules at Senior Connection. The cost to enter the contest is $25.

Up to 15 dishes can be entered into the cook-off, and there are still slots available.

There will be a $5 entry fee to attend the event for spectators, which includes all the chili one can eat while it lasts.

You do not have to be a member of Senior Connection to enter the contest or attend the event.

“This will be our fifth year hosting the chili cook-off,” said Senior Connection director Vanessa McKinney. “We thought it would be something the community would enjoy and a good fundraiser for us. It was a hit, so we kept doing it.”

McKinney said there are always different varieties of chili in the contest. No specific type of chili is required, though entrants must make a gallon of their recipe.

Debbie Housner took the top prize in last year’s contest.

The cook-off was added to an existing annual event in the health fair in an effort to get the community more involved.

McKinney said in the past, booths have been set up by places like St. Vincent’s and Brookwood health systems, Cornerstone, the YMCA, the Chilton County Extension Office and some local doctors and home health organizations.

“They provide valuable information not just to seniors, but other people as well,” McKinney said.

Other vendors, such as crafts sales, are also welcome to come set up. The cost will be $25 for any vendor setting up a booth, be it health-related or otherwise.

“We had a couple of people selling jewelry last year,” McKinney said. “We would love to have other people bring in crafts and things like that.”

The Usual Suspects jazz band will be providing entertainment during the event.

“We would love to see a packed house,” McKinney said.