Suns to host Chili Cook-off and Music Festival

July 21, 2004|by BOB PARASILITI

The best chili usually is made up of a wide array of ingredients.

The Community Free Clinic and the Hagerstown Suns say the same could be said for chili cook-offs.

The two organizations joined forces Tuesday to announce the first-ever Chili Cook-off and Music Festival to benefit the clinic on Sept. 25 at Municipal Stadium.

"What is more American than eating chili and coming to baseball games?" said Christina Rudden, executive director of the Community Free Clinic. "The Hagerstown Suns have been fabulous when it comes to working for community events and this is the perfect location for something like this."

The festival will feature the search for the best chili recipe in the area, along with music from eight to 10 local bands from noon to 8 p.m. The creator of the chili voted the best at the festival will win $1,000, and awards will be given to the hottest and people's choice recipes - as sampled by and voted on by festival patrons - and for the most creatively decorated cooking station.


"The Hagerstown Suns want to find a way to give back to the community where we can," said Suns General Manager Kurt Landes.

"Our goal is to utilize the ballpark year-round and this is the time of year that we can really pitch in and support a cause," Landes said. "We are excited to be partnered with the free clinic and help a needed organization with a declining budget."

The proceeds will help fund the Community Free Clinic's objective to serve Washington County's medically uninsured. The clinic serves more than 10,000 patients per year at no cost. Services average $147 per patient, Rudden said.

The stage for the bands will be on the Municipal Stadium infield, allowing festivalgoers to enjoy the music from chairs and blankets while sitting on the outfield grass. Cook-off stations will ring the stage on the field's warning track. There also will be a kids' play zone, and food, drink and beer concessions will be available.

Chili competitors can register by clicking on the logo at and or by calling the clinic at 301-733-9234. Entry fees are $50 for companies and nonprofit organizations, and $25 for individuals.

Tickets, which go on sale in mid-August, will cost $10 for adults and $5 for ages 4 to 10 if bought in advance; $12 for adults and $6 for ages 4 to 10 the day of the event. Tickets include coupons for chili samples.

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