As superstorm Sandy threatened cold, wet weather, Backyard Chili was bringing record-breaking heat to the 8th Annual Charity Chili-Cookoff at Earlyhouse. After years of dedication, it was a first ever sweep when Eddie Heaney and his team, Greg Badgett and Adam Arbogast walked away with both the Judges 1st Place and the People’s Choice.
Visitors hailing from North Carolina to New York experienced chili tasting at 16 different booths where the flavors and styles were as different as the many decorations that graced the tents. This years’ teams pulled out all the stops as they drew crowds to eat their fill in support of a worthy cause. Intestinal Express, comprised of Bruce Stiles, John Stiles and Graham Schwartz took home “Most Spirited Chili Team” for their original display, complete with a flaming toilet. Nearby, 2nd Place Winners, Rick Davis and Stevie Pippin tempted passersby with stuffed jalapenos and sausage from their full size smoker, but it was the hint of smoke in their award-winning “Flaming Sombreros” chili that commanded the respect of the judges. Third place winners “Wild at Heart” may have been more aptly named “Not for the Faint of Heart” as rookie and veteran tasters alike agreed the heat in this chili was off the charts. Team members included Buck and April Page, Tommy Page, Pat Page, Cindy and Johnny Brady.
To read the entire story, see the Nov. 22 edition of The Central Virginian.