News

Chili cook-off a spicy blast of fun for a good cause

Jane Howard


Four teams came out on top at the Second Annual Cook County Chili Cook-Off March 19, 2011 at the community center and 4-H building in Grand Marais. (L-R) Rich Fortunato ( judge); Yvonne Gennrich and Jen Sutton representing Grand Portage Community Church (second place and winner of the people’s choice award); Bruce Block and Trevor Delamater of Team Stealth and The Bruce (first place); Chelsea Lueck, owner of Gunflint Mercantile (tied for third place); and Aaron Logan and Jared Berg of the U.S. Border Patrol (on their own time and with their own funds, also tied for third place). 
Photo courtesy of Caleb White Four teams came out on top at the Second Annual Cook County Chili Cook-Off March 19, 2011 at the community center and 4-H building in Grand Marais. (L-R) Rich Fortunato ( judge); Yvonne Gennrich and Jen Sutton representing Grand Portage Community Church (second place and winner of the people’s choice award); Bruce Block and Trevor Delamater of Team Stealth and The Bruce (first place); Chelsea Lueck, owner of Gunflint Mercantile (tied for third place); and Aaron Logan and Jared Berg of the U.S. Border Patrol (on their own time and with their own funds, also tied for third place). Photo courtesy of Caleb White The Second Annual Cook County Chili Cook-Off was a rousing success, bringing in about $2,500 for the Cook County Food Shelf and Feed My Starving Children, a nonprofit hunger relief organization. Twenty-two (more than twice as many as last year) competed on Saturday, March 19 at the community center and 4-H building for top honors in both a judges’ category and a people’s choice category.


Above: Bruce Block and Trevor Delamater had to fight one of last year’s judges’ choice winners, Seth Falk of Team Squat Club, for the traveling cornucopia trophy. Behind Seth are Colin Everson (L) and Kale Boomer (R), part of this year’s Squat Club. Above: Bruce Block and Trevor Delamater had to fight one of last year’s judges’ choice winners, Seth Falk of Team Squat Club, for the traveling cornucopia trophy. Behind Seth are Colin Everson (L) and Kale Boomer (R), part of this year’s Squat Club. Fundraising for Feed My Starving Children was initiated a year ago by youth groups at Bethlehem Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Free Church. The latest cook-off brings the local fundraiser over its goal of $19,000. In May, a semi truck will deliver ingredients to Grand Marais, and as many volunteers as can be found will package those ingredients for distribution to needy areas throughout the world.

Half of the money raised on March 19 will be donated to the Cook County Food Shelf.

Four teams won judges’ awards: First place went to Stealth and The Bruce (Trevor Delamater and Bruce Block); second place went to Yvonne Gennrich, representing Mt. Rose Community Church in Grand Portage; and third place was a tie between Jared Berg and Aaron Logan, representing the U.S. Border Patrol, and Chelsea Lueck, new owner of Gunflint Mercantile. Lueck’s spice mix can be purchased at Gunflint Mercantile. The Border Patrol officers were off duty and spent their own money on the chili ingredients.


Photo courtesy of Caleb White Photo courtesy of Caleb White The people’s choice award went to Yvonne Gennrich/Mt. Rose Community Church. She won the people’s choice award last year as well, but with a different recipe.

The amount above the goal will be seed money for the next project, which will be to send food baskets to Japan in the wake of its devastating earthquake and tsunami earlier this month.

The Cook County News- Herald was able to get a hold of the recipe for the judges’ top pick, the chili made by Trevor Delamater and Bruce Block. Upon closer inspection, however, we realized that some secret ingredients were cleverly disguised as “your favorite spices, to taste” and “1 can secret bean mixture.” Thanks a lot, guys.



Left: Jim and baby James Miller of Hovland were two very happy campers at the chili cook-off. 
Staff photo/Jane Howard Left: Jim and baby James Miller of Hovland were two very happy campers at the chili cook-off. Staff photo/Jane Howard

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