UPAWS challenges Yoopers to chili cook-off competition

MARQUETTE – The Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter has raised a challenge to the residents of Marquette County: Who among them makes the best chili?

The winner will be crowned at the 1st Annual UPAWS Chili Cook-Off Challenge. The cook-off will be from 5-8 p.m. Saturday at the Red Rock Lanes and Banquet Center in Ishpeming. Any cook who wishes to do battle for the coveted crown of chili cook-off champion must enter before Wednesday.

“We are still really in need of cooks for the event,” UPAWS Manager Lareina Van Strien said. “If you think you have the best chili contact us. You might win some prizes, some notoriety and have the best chili in Marquette County.”

The cost for those attending the event is $10 for all-you-can-eat chili. There will be live music by Travis and the Midnight Movers as well as Dee Dee Dupras from Sunny 101.9 FM as the master of ceremonies. A cash bar and pop will also be available. All proceeds for this event will be going toward the community spay and neuter fund. Last year more than 300 pets were spayed or neutered in Marquette County.

“All the money we raise at this chili cook-off will go directly into the fund to help people in our community get their pets fixed,” Van Strien said. “This helps UPAWS because it lowers the number of puppies and kittens that come to the shelter.”

Awards will be given to first place, second place and most unique chili of Marquette County. First place receives a $100 gift card; second place receives a $50 gift card and the most unique chili receives a $25 gift card.

There will be an UPAWS information booth at the event with photos of the pets staying at the shelter as well as information about volunteer opportunities at the shelter. There are 45 to 50 cats and 15 to 20 dogs at the shelter that are seeking forever homes.

For more information, call 475-6661 or email info@upaws.org.

Sylvia Stevens can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 240.