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Wilderness Road Hosting First Chili Cookoff

Do you have the best Chili in Southwest Virginia? Prove it!

Wilderness Road State Park is hosting their first ever Chili Cookoff on Saturday, August 9, 2014 beginning at 2 p.m. Signups are underway with teams competing for cash prizes. The Chili Cookoff is part of the park’s 1st annual Community Appreciation Day and Back to School Bash.

At Wilderness Road State Park

Teams, or individuals, must prepare their chili onsite. It must be cooked and presented for judging by 3 p.m. Teams can begin setting up and cooking by as early as 9 a.m. The park will provide the electricity, but teams must provide their own ingredients, pots and other cooking utensils.

Each team’s chili will be judged by a panel of three, two park representatives as well as a third designated judge. A cash prize will be awarded to the winning team, along with the title, Wilderness Road Chili Champion.

A second cash prize will be awarded to the People’s Choice winning team. This added twist to the Chili Cookoff allows park visitors to pay $1 to sample each team’s chili and cast one vote for their favorite.

Make it hot, or make it not. Make it with beans, or leave them out. Make it with chicken, or beef, or both. Maybe make it with beans only. The choice belongs to the team as to what type of chili they want to present for judging.

There is a $10 entry fee per team and they will be permitted to offer one pot of chili for judging.

The Community Appreciation Day and Back to School Bash offers guests activities such as: bounce houses, kids train rides, a cornhole tournament, a dunking booth, emergency vehicles, historical programming at Martin’s Station, a hot dog dinner and a Ron Short concert all free of charge so everyone can come out and enjoy their state park.

Bounce Houses are a big draw for an event at Wilderness Road State Park
Bounce Houses are a big draw for events

Historic Martin's Station will be open offering various 18th century demonstrations, such as hide tanning, blacksmithing and more. The fort will also offer two special programs, Hand and Hued, at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m, and Fire in the Night at 8 p.m.

In addition to these activities, the Lee County Extension Office will provide their model milk cow for kids and adults to try, as well as making worm farms.

The Daniel Boone Soil and Water Conservation District is also providing activities for kids while the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries will have a boat on hand to discuss fishing and boat safety.

Wilderness Road State Park is open 8 a.m. to dusk each day. The park office and visitor center is open daily 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Historic Martin’s Station is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., but closed on Tuesdays.

For more information on all 36 of Virginia’s award-winning state parks call toll-free 1-800-933-PARK (7275) or visit the website here. The award-winning Virginia State Parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.

Published: 07/24/2014

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