Hot chili has always been cool in Carson

Back in the days of Carson City Mainstreet, in the late 1980s, five committees worked to help revitalize our downtown.

Planning, Design, Economic Restructuring, Membership & Development, and Promotion. From the day after we moved here and settled in, we found ourselves involved in Mainstreet as a way to contribute to the community.

Steve Browne, then of Cactus Jack's, and Maxine Nietz of Arlington Group Events LLC were chairs of the Promotion Committee tasked with marketing a unified, quality image of downtown as the center of activities.

One of our premier events was to become the ever-popular Carson City Great Chili Cookoff. This event was held at various locations from Spear Street next to Cactus Jacks, to Proctor Street next to City Hall, to the Ormsby House parking lot, and in Telegraph Square (before it was officially Telegraph Square).

Over the years, everyone including participants, judges, vendors, musicians, and the tasting public always had a blast at the annual Downtown chili cookoff.

Now, in honor of Carson City's 150th birthday, the Carson City Great Chili Cookoff is back. On Aug. 16, participate in the "Sasquatch Chili Cookoff" at the Nugget Parking Lot. Why Sasquatch? Simply because the members of the Sesquicentennial Committee could not say that word (Sesqi... Ð huh!?!).

So we decided to play on that word and call this the "Sasquatch Chili Cookoff." But not only Big Foot is allowed in - everyone is welcome.

This great amateur chili cookoff is part of the Carson City Sesquicentennial, or 150th Birthday Celebration taking place on Aug. 16 in the Nugget Parking Lot in downtown Carson City.

Tables and chairs will be provided. Supply your own utensils and camp stove and shade tent. Bring your uncooked ingredients for preparation on site. This is a "no holds barred" amateur chili competition. From roadkill to rattlesnake, all kinds of chili are encouraged. Red or green, with beans or without, hot, medium, or mild - you decide.

Entrants will cook a minimum of two quarts of chili. Cooks will set up at 10 a.m. and start cooking as soon as they are ready and have been given the "go" signal by a chili official.

Judging and public tasting will begin at 1 p.m. Prizes will be awarded around 2 p.m.

Taste tickets will be sold to the public, and proceeds will benefit the Carson City Sesqui... Sesqui.... Sesqui... Oh, heck, the 150th birthday.

The entry fee is only $20.

• Maxine Nietz is a member of the Carson City Sesquicentennial Committee.


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