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Events > 2014 Events > Chili Cook Off

Chili Cook Off

November 1, 2014
Photos by Mike Marquis and Mike Klinger

Firefighters from Mission Viejo Fire Station 24 were called away from their brief stop at the Elks Lodge on Saturday afternoon where they had been invited to serve as Judges for the Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley Elks Chili Cook-Off. Firefighter Paramedics Pablo Barriga, Eric Lamb, James Watson, and Nate Brown promised they would return to complete the judging and they were able to keep their promise as the call was just a short one that had a happy ending. Ten chili teams kept the chili simmering and were ready when the judges returned. The fun event was held in the Elks Lodge party-yard and put on by the Elks camping club, the Run-A-Ways. Club member Andy Costello organized the event. He thanked all the contestants and said, “We were proud to have the Firefighters. They did a brave job of judging.” When asked how hot the chili entries were this year, Costello replied, “I don’t know how those Firefighters were able to eat that much chili without catching fire themselves.”

(above left) Leading Knight, Camacho Alvarez (L) and ER Derek Randles (R) greet guests (seated) to the Chili Cook Off.
(above right) PER Charlie Hart samples the chili from MV Elk's Ladies Red Hot Mama's Chili.

The ten red-hot cooking teams were:

Team Number

Team Members

Team Name

No 1

Brenda, Tod and Eve Lepper

Number One Chili

No 2

Kevin Hughes & ER Derek Randles

Vicars Vittles

No 3

No entry


No 4

Dave and Kim Perry

Campfire Chili

No 5

Ken Zittrer and Bob Hauxhurst

Run-A-Ways Marty Strong Chili

No 6

Janet Griffin and Diane Wilson

Elks Ladies Club Chili

No 7

Greg Morgan and Kevin Lindley

Lost Leaders Chili

No 8

Ed MacKay and Cecilia Sanchez

Chiliwood Chili

No 9

Chris Spicer and Rick Lambert

Cloud Nine Chili

No 10

Laura and Dennis Lumley

Lumley’s Chili

No 11

Dave McLeod and Camacho Alvarez

Chili-Beaners Chili

Awards were presented by Run-A-Ways Wagon Master PER Pat Martino. First place honors went to Dave McLeod and Camacho Alvarez of the Chili-Beaners. The People’s Choice Award went to, Ken Zittrer and Bob Hauxhurst of the Run-A-Ways. Other top winners were Elk Ladies, Lumley Chili, Campfire Chili, and Number One Chili. The band “Cover Story” kept toes tapping and added to the afternoon festivities. Event helpers Louie Alvarez, Pam Mackay, Mary Ann Costello, PER Irene Romero, and Mary Ann Alvarez served Hamburgers and Hot dogs to satisfy the hungry crowd while the chili was cooking. Charlie Hart, and campers Chuck and jean Chapman, Bob Hauxhurst, Ken Zittrer, Ken Eilers and Jim Wessling assisted, setting up tables and canopies. Basia Bills, Pat Martino and Howard Sargent tallied the judges’ scorecards and People’s Choice ballots. Lodge President Derek Randles congratulated the Run-A-Ways and said of the event, “We had quite a few brand new members attend which is great because they got to see that we are not all work and no play. Our new members are the future of our Order.”

(above) PER Pat Martino presents the Peoples Choice Award to Ken and Bob.

(below) The Firemen from MV Station 24 "fire up" their taste buds for the all important judging.

The Mission Viejo / Saddleback Elks Lodge No. 2444, celebrating forty-four (44) years of service to the Saddleback Valley communities, is one of ten lodges in the Orange Coast District of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) whose headquarters is in Chicago, Illinois. The BPOE is a charitable organization with a 145 year history of giving, “Elks Care, Elks Share.” For information on Elks charities call (949) 830-3557