Chili trials

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By Bob Reichman

It was a good day for chili, and there was plenty of it to be had!
Cool temperatures greeted patrons as they filtered into the city of Bushnell’s new downtown park to participate in the third annual Spice it up for Hospice chili cook-off.
While temperatures struggled to hit 70, chili connoisseurs were sampling chili from a variety of vendors participating in the annual event. This year, 15 different teams turned out to take the chili challenge.
There goal was to become the most popular chili cooks by garnering the most votes from tasters. Participants also vied to have the best chili booth display.
As people tasted and decided, Todd Brown and the River Junction Band entertained the crowd by playing a variety of musical numbers.
All of the money raised from the event benefits the Lane Purcell Hospice House in Sumterville and patient care.
Participation was almost double from last year, said Susan Noell, advisory board member. At $5 for an armband that allowed participants to vote and sample the different dishes, the event raised at least $6,000.
“We were thrilled with the weather and the participation,” Noell said. “The vendors and the volunteers and the public who turned out really supported it and we really appreciated it.”
The proceeds will be used to provide comfort and care at the Sumterville facility for residents experiencing life-limiting illnesses and their families.
The facility is operated by Cornerstone Hospice and Palliative Care Inc., a not-for-profit community-based healthcare organization.