Chili cook-offs set to heat up Sandpoint

International Chili Society will host state and regional chili competitions at Trinity At City Beach

Lyndsie Kiebert
Reader Staff Writer

Anyone hankering for a carefully-crafted blend of beans, meat and competition should consider visiting Trinity at City Beach the weekend of June 24-25. Between Saturday’s Mountain State Regional chili cook-off and Sunday’s Idaho State chili cook-off, there should be plenty of the stuff to go around.

Sanctioned by the International Chili Society, these two cook-offs will ultimately send six chili chefs to the world championships. Categories of competition include red chili, chili verde and salsa, and prizes reach as high as $1,500 for first place in the red chili category.

Tasty spicy chili con carne casseroleThe man organizing the events, Doug Dishong, attended his first cook-off in 1978 with his father. Since then, competitive chili has remained a big part of his life. Dishong said his son is now taking part in the competitions as well—even winning fifth place at the world competition last year.

“I mean, there’s the combination of the meat and spices, but a lot of it is the camaraderie of the people,” Dishong said, adding he’s known many of his chili-cooking friends for more than three decades. “I’ve gained so many friends over the years.”

Dishong said there will be live music from local artist John Kelley both days, and K102 Country will be there all day Sunday. He said everyone is welcome to come and enjoy the chili festivities.

Those seeking more information about how to register as a competitor for either day of competition should visit chilicookoff.com.

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