Fire & Ice Chili Cook-Off gets better every year

Community, Festivals

Blue Ridge GA hosted the 9th annual Fire & Ice Chili Cook-Off on Saturday, February 16, 2019 in beautiful downtown City Park. Although it started out as a dreary, gray sky day, by afternoon the sun shown through the clouds for the estimated 7,000+ visitors who came to Blue Ridge from as far away as Douglasville, Augusta, Lafayette, and surrounding neighbor states.

The festivities began at 11 a.m. Chili cook-off judging was 4 p.m.

The Blue Ridge Business Association along with the Fannin Chamber of Commerce partnered to host this year’s event making it one of the largest and best the city has seen so far.

The judges for this year’s chili cook-off were:

  • Austin Ramsey, former head chef at Black Sheep.
  • Rick Skelton, Chair of Blue Ridge Planning and Zoning Board as well as Board of Appeals.
  • State Senator Steve Gooch.
  • Sarah Auman, owner of ‘Out of the Blue’.
  • Jane Waley, owner of Sycamore Crossing.

These esteemed judges voted in the following categories “on 5 attributes: aroma, color, taste, texture and aftertaste”:

  • Individual Adult.
  • Team Adult.
  • Civic Team.
  • Restaurants.

Visitors cast their votes for their favorite tasting chili in the ‘People’s Choice Award’.

This year’s contestants included:

  • Black Sheep.
  • Blue Jeans Pizza & Pasta.
  • Blue Ridge Brewery
  • Blue Ridge Parade of Homes.
  • Cameron Hall of Ellijay
  • Chester Brunnenmeyer’s Bar & Grill.
  • Chris Adgate.
  • Chuck’s Moonshine Chili.
  • Flying Trout Restaurant.
  • Grandpa Bill’s Wild Turkey Chili.
  • Grillin Gangsters.
  • Grumpy Old Men Brewing.
  • HempWorx.
  • Hot House Missionary Baptist Church.
  • Kevin Backus.
  • Mercier Orchards.
  • Pit Stop Chili.
  • Project Chimps.
  • Reggie Berry.
  • The Blue Coyote Bar & Grill.
  • Treo Blue Ridge.

Chili Cook-off tickets were $10 each. Beer and/or a glass of wine tickets were $6.

The businesses serving beer/wine with approved tickets were Grumpy Old Men, Fannin Brewing, Mercier’s Hard Cider, and Arches Brewing.

Placed around downtown Blue Ridge were carved rock ice statues. These beautiful pieces of art were created by ‘Rock on Ice’ Master Food Artist/ Professional Ice Carver, Titus Arensberg, from Sunbury, OH. He held several demonstrations throughout the event showing off his craft to an eager audience. All ice sculptures were carved with a chain saw making each one an amazing piece of art. In his 7th appearance for Fire & Ice Chili Cook-off, Arensberg stated he enjoyed coming each year.  

 Music was heard in downtown Blue Ridge for the duration of the festival. Rick Byers Band played a mixture of country, southern rock, bluegrass, and Americana tunes to the delight of many. Folks, young and old, were seen dancing under the pavilion while others sang along to their favorite tunes.

 

 

 

Even Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus took time out of their busy schedule in North Pole duties to visit.

As with many good things that come to an end on such a beautiful day and event, it was time to announce to winners in each category.

Civic Group:

  • 1st Place: Project Chimp (Morganton).
  • 2nd Place: Hot House Missionary Baptist Church (Mineral Bluff).

Individual:

  • 1st Place: Pit Stop Chili.
  • 2nd Place: Reggie Berry (Atlanta).
  • 3rd Place: Chris Adgate.

Team:

  • 1st Place: Blue Ridge Parade of Homes.
  • 2nd Place: HempWorx.
  • 3rd Place: Chuck’s Moonshine Chili.

Restaurant:

  • 1st Place: Black Sheep.
  • 2nd Place: Chester Brunnenmeyer’s Bar & Grill.
  • 3rd Place: Cameron Hall of Ellijay.

And this year’s People’s Choice Award goes to ‘Black Sheep’.  Congratulations to you and your team.

Well done, everyone. See you next year!

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Fire and Ice a success in Blue Ridge

Community, Downtown Blue Ridge

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. – Once a year in the dead of winter, things get spicy in downtown Blue Ridge as residents and tourists alike experience a “chili” weekend in February.

The eighth annual Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off Festival, brought to you by the Blue Ridge Business Association partnering with the Fannin County Chamber of Commerce, kicked off Saturday, Feb. 17, and brought in crowds despite the weather.

Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Fire and Ice, Chili Cook Off, Blue Ridge Business Association, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce, David Ralston, B. Alison Sosebee, Kay Kendall, Doug David, Bob Evans, Cesar Martinez, Cindy Trimble, People's Choice Award, Chester Brunnenmeyer's Bar and Grill, Blue Jeans Pizza, Blue Ridge Brewery, Project Chimps, Habitat for Humanity, Hot House Missionary Church, Grilling Gangsters, Kelly Barton, Pitstop Chili, Boar's Nesters, Mercier Orchards, Chuck's Moonshine Chili

Crowds enjoyed the live ice sculpting demonstration provided by Rock On Ice.

Visitors to the festival were welcomed to take part in the judging of the chili cook off where the contestant with the highest number of votes takes home the coveted People’s Choice award.

The Fire and Ice Festival also now holds the honor of being the largest ice sculpting display in the Southeast. Award-winning National Ice Carving Champion Rock On Ice created many unique sculptures sponsored by several area businesses and demonstrated their difficult art form firsthand with live ice sculpting demonstrations in the park.

Official Chili Cook Off judges were also on hand to judge this years 16 contestants and to award first, second, and third place in four different categories.

Among the guest judges were Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives David Ralston, Appalachian Judicial Circuit District Attorney B. Alison Sosebee, former celebrity chef Bob Evans, developer Doug David, and former chef and restaurant owner Kay Kendall.

“This is really one of the bigger events put on by the business association,” Blue Ridge Business Association President Cesar Martinez spoke about the festival.

Martinez explained that despite the unpredictable weather, this year’s festival saw a large turn out: “Better than last year. Last year, it rained actually more than this.”

Guest announcer Cindy Trimble took the stage at 3 p.m. for the moment that everyone had been waiting for, the announcement of 2018 Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off winners.

Trimble explained that judges were given five categories in which they had to rate each chili. These categories were aroma, color, taste, texture, and after-taste. Each category was rated on a scale of 1-to-10 and points from all judges were then added together to determine a winner.

The maximum number of points possible for a contestant to receive was 250.

The winners for each category were:

Blue Ridge, Fannin County, Georgia, Fire and Ice, Chili Cook Off, Blue Ridge Business Association, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce, David Ralston, B. Alison Sosebee, Kay Kendall, Doug David, Bob Evans, Cesar Martinez, Cindy Trimble, People's Choice Award, Chester Brunnenmeyer's Bar and Grill, Blue Jeans Pizza, Blue Ridge Brewery, Project Chimps, Habitat for Humanity, Hot House Missionary Church, Grilling Gangsters, Kelly Barton, Pitstop Chili, Boar's Nesters, Mercier Orchards, Chuck's Moonshine Chili

Chester Brunnenmeyer’s Bar and Grill took home the People’s Choice Award for a second year in a row.

Adult Individual
1. Grilling Gangsters with 176 points
2. Kelly Barton with 174 points
3. Pitstop Chili with 153 points

Team Adult
1. Boars Nesters with 175 points
2. Mercier Orchards with 162 points
3. Chuck’s Moonshine Chili with 155 points

Civic Team
1. Project Chimps with 178 points
2. Habitat for Humanity with 164 points
3. Hot House Missionary Church with 129 points

Restaurant
1. Chester Brunnenmeyer’s Bar and Grill with 168 points
2. Blue Jeans Pizza with 166 points
3. Blue Ridge Brewery with 165 points

Project Chimps, a sanctuary for chimpanzees, received the highest rating by the judges, and Trimble pointed out a uniqueness to their recipe: “This was a really unusually chili and you guys loved it.”

The recipe used by Project Chimps was “chimp friendly,” meaning that all the ingredients used were ingredients that the chimps could also eat and often do for their meals.

Finally, the coveted People’s Choice award was given. Out of 934 ballots turned in by visitors to the festival, Chester Brunnenmeyer’s received 185 of those votes, giving them the people’s choice chili award for a second year in a row.

 

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Author

Natalie Kissel

Natalie@FetchYourNews.com

Fannin Chamber Newsletter

Community
Fannin County Chamber of Commerce  eNewsletter
July 11, 2017
News for Members

Leading the way to economic vitality and quality of life in Blue Ridge, McCaysville, Morganton and all of beautiful Fannin County, Georgia. Together we prosper.

Tuesday, July 18 – 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
 
at the
North Georgia Boat Lift
13944 Appalachian Hwy., Morganton, GA, 30560

Fannin in Totality Area of Eclipse August 21!
 
On August 21, 2017 there will be a total eclipse of the sun that can be seen in totality in parts of the North Georgia Mountains, including the Blue Ridge area.  
Where and How to Watch
Find a clear spot with a good view of the sky. You can see the sun and the eclipse wearing special eclipse glasses; do not look at the sun without safety glasses. Here are some examples:

Chamber Visitor Center

at 152 Orvin Lance Drive – 55 seconds of totality at 2:34:50 p.m.

Lake Blue Ridge Dam

– 1 minute 2 seconds of totality at 2:34:50 p.m.

Morganton Point Recreation Area

– 1 minute 8 seconds of totality at 2:34:50 p.m.

Horseshoe Bend Park in McCaysville

– 1 minute 31 seconds of totality at 2:34:15 p.m.

Downtown McCaysville

– 1 minute 35 seconds of totality at 2:34:10 p.m
Ocoee Whitewater Center – 1 minute 46 minutes of totality at2:33:45 p.m.

25th Anniversary Golf Tournament
The Chamber’s 25th annual golf tournament will take place on October 2 at  Butternut Creek Golf Course. There are a few team spots left. Anyone interested in signing up for a Corporate Team or being a hole sponsor please contact Kim Foster at kimfoster@tds.net.
   Corporate Team Form              Hole Sponsor Form

July Community Events Calendar
June 17 – July 22 – Community Quilt and Fiber Arts Exhibit,
Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
July 13 – July 30 – Live Theater: Dearly Departed, Blue Ridge Community Theater
July 14 – Downtown Drum Circle, Downtown Blue Ridge
July 15 – Tri-State Model Railroaders Open House, Mineral Bluff Historic Depot
July 19 – Treo’s Sweetwater Dinner Pairing, Treo Blue Ridge
July 21 – Movies in the Park presents: The BFG, Downtown City Park
July 21-29 – Georgia Mountain Fair, Hiawassee
July 22 – Jamie O’Neal & Andy Griggs Live in Concert, Grandaddy Mimm’s Moonshine Distillery
July 27 – An Intimate Acoustic Evening with Von Grey, Toccoa Riverside Restaurant
July 28 – Classic Car Cruise-In, Dairy Queen
July 29 – August 26 – 3D Exhibit Off the Wall, Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
Recurring Events
Tuesday
* Trivia Tuesdays, Fightingtown Tavern

Thursday 

 
Bingo, Kiwanis Fairgrounds
* Trivia Night! Fannin Brewing Company
* Pickin’ In Horseshoe Bend Park
Saturday
*Blue Ridge Farmers Market, Downtown Blue Ridge
*Blue Ridge Motorsports Park Races, Blue Ridge Motorsports Park
Weekends
* Brewery Tours & TastingsThursday through Saturday’s at  Fannin Brewing CompanyGrumpy Old Men and Mercier Orchards.
* Swan Drive-in –Now Playing
FOR THE FULL CALENDAR – Click Here
In This Issue
Business After Hours
Solar Eclipse
2017 Golf Tournament
Community Events Calendar

Chamber Events
Calendar
July 11 – Golf Committee Meeting, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce
12:00 p.m.
July 17 – Tourism Committee Meeting at the Chamber
12:00 p.m.
July 18 – Business After Hours – Lake Blue Ridge Civic Association at the North Georgia Boat Lift, 13944 Appalachian Hwy., Morganton
5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
July 19 – Board of Directors Meeting, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce Meeting Room, Executive Committee Meeting at 11:00 a.m., Board Meeting at 12:00 p.m.
July 25 – Ribbon Cutting for High Speed Tactical and Safety Solutions at the Chamber
10:00 a.m.
July 27 – Ambassador Lunch at the Blue Ridge Fry Shop, 560 East Main St.
12:00 p.m.
________________________
 
Member to Member Ads
Dearly Departed poster Blue Ridge Community Theater
Feed the Kids Fundraiser at Chateau Meichtry
DFACS poster for townhall meeting july 20
Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterFind us on PinterestView on InstagramView our videos on YouTube

The mission of the Fannin County Chamber of Commerce is to provide services to members, support existing business and promote economic development and tourism, while preserving and enhancing our community’s character, natural resources and quality of life.

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce

152 Orvin Lance Drive, Blue Ridge GA 30513
706-632-5680

Fannin eNewsletter June 27, 2017

Community
Fannin County Chamber of Commerce  eNewsletter
June 27, 2017
News for Members
Fannin County Chamber of Commerce Newsletter

Leading the way to economic vitality and quality of life in Blue Ridge, McCaysville, Morganton and all of beautiful Fannin County, Georgia.

Fourth of July Festivities
Friday
June 30 Firecracker Special Train Ride, Blue Ridge Scenic Railway

June 30Miner’s Homecoming Weekend, Ducktown, TN

Saturday
July 1Fireworks at Lake Blue Ridge, Lake Blue Ridge Marina

July 1 – 

Downtown Blue Ridge

July 1Miner’s Homecoming Weekend, Ducktown, TN
Sunday

July 2Lake Blue Ridge Boat Parade, Lake Blue Ridge

Tuesday 
Epworth Community Club
July 4Blue Ridge Freedom 5k and 10k, Downtown Blue Ridge

Newsworthy…
Maps of Highway 5 expansion available at Chamber
The Georgia Department of Transportation has provided the Chamber with large format maps of the plans for the Highway 5 expansion including the McCaysville truck route/bypass. You can take a look in the Chamber board room.
Holiday Hours
The Chamber Welcome Center and Caboose will be closed on July 4th in observance of Independence Day. Happy Holidays!

June Community Events Calendar
June 17-July 22Community Quilt and Fiber Arts Exhibit, Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association
June 30Main and Main Grand Opening, Above The Vault Blue Ridge
Recurring Events
Tuesday
* Trivia Tuesdays, Fightingtown Tavern

Thursday

 
* Bingo, Kiwanis Fairgrounds
* Trivia Night! Fannin Brewing Company
* Pickin’ In Horseshoe Bend Park
Saturday
*Blue Ridge Farmers Market, Downtown Blue Ridge
Weekends
* Brewery Tours & Tastings: Thursday through Saturday’s at  Fannin Brewing CompanyGrumpy Old Men and Mercier Orchards.
* Swan Drive-inNow Playing
FOR THE FULL CALENDAR Click Here

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Find us on Pinterest
View our videos on YouTube
  View on Instagram
In This Issue
Newsworthy
Community Events Calendar

Chamber Events
Calendar
 
June 27 – Golf Committee Meeting at the Chamber, 12:00 noon.
July 4 – Welcome Centers Closed

July 5 – Lunch N Leads at Blue Jeans Pizza and Pasta Factory, 12:00 p.m.

________________________
Member to Member Ads
 
 
Light up the Lake Boat Parade July 2_ 2017

The mission of the Fannin County Chamber of Commerce is to provide services to members, support existing business and promote economic development and tourism, while preserving and enhancing our community’s character, natural resources and quality of life.

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce

152 Orvin Lance Drive, Blue Ridge GA 30513
706-632-5680

Fire & Ice Chili Cook Off

Community, Featured Stories

The wind was cold and snow flurries were flying at the 3rd Annual Fire & Ice Chili Cook off in beautiful Downtown Blue Ridge, GA. (more…)

Fire & Ice Chili Cook Off

Community, Featured Stories

The wind was cold and snow flurries were flying at the 3rd Annual Fire & Ice Chili Cook off in beautiful Downtown Blue Ridge, GA. (more…)

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