“These guys do an awesome job,” Michelle Parrish, executive director of the Richmond County United Way said. “Not to mention competitive.”
This year’s chili cook-off is the third year that the United Way and the local Piedmont Natural Gas have held the event.
“Everyone really enjoys doing it,” Joel Fox, operations manager at Piedmont Natural Gas said. “And they get a year’s worth of bragging rights.”
This year, eight home-cooked chilies were entered into the contest from employees at PNG.
One employee, Issac “Junior” English took home first place this tear for his kettle cooked chili for the first time.
The chili dishes were judged on a scale from 1-10 and ranged from, “superb” to “You have to be kidding.”
“We make some good chili here,” Fox said. “Some sweet, some too hot to put in your mouth.”
The winner will take their concoction to the regional level where they will try to one-up several of the competitors in January.
Last year’s winner from Piedmont Natural Gas tied for first place in a competition in New Bern, but took home second place after a tie-breaker relegated him the runner-up.
“This is a great way to come in, have lunch and make contributions to the United Way,” Parrish said.
The competition raises money at the cook-off by giving employees a chance to eat lunch that day for a $5 donation and is all-you-can-eat.
“We enjoy supporting our United Way,” Fox said.
n Staff writer Bryan Stewart can be reached at 997-3111 ext. 15 or by e-mail at email@example.com.