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Community supports annual 4-H Chili Cook Off and fundraiser

Winners of the annual 4-H Chili Cook Off line up for a photo at Roan Creek Elementary School. L-R, Maddie Colson, Dylan Belvins, Allie Colson, Noah Reece, Kiley Reece, Shaydun Keith, Emma Savery The event saw a large crowd of local residents who have supported the students and enjoyed the tasty selection of Chili. Photo by Sarah Ransom

By Sarah Ransom

Roan Creek Elementary School saw a sizable crowd while it hosted the annual 4-H Chili Cook-off.
Event organizers enjoyed the participation of the 18 teams of children in the tasty competition as emphasized that had the opportunity to feature three children per group.
Of course, the judges were in for a delight as they tasted delicious chili after delicious chili.
The Johnson County 4-H members were clearly committed to making their best chili to share with the community.
The winning teams included: Emmy Savery and Shaydun Keith for the unique chili.
Kiley, Noah and Sylas Reece won best for home-style chili and Dylan Blevins, Maddie Colson and Allie Closon for spiciest chili.
The trio’s work was also voted as the 2019 People’s Choice Chili.
Whitney Colson, 4-H Mom, stated “My kids enjoyed the event, they loved cooking the chili and being together with cousins. They enjoy serving the chili; it gives them a chance to feel grown-up. It’s a good thing for kids to be able to learn to cook and learn life skills.”
The Johnson County Schools and Dr. Cheri Long have received much appreciation of helping to host this year’s event.
It is said that the beauty of the 4-H program is that it’s a community program that impacts every child, which Danielle Pleasant, 4-H Agent, did not hesitate to acknowledge when she said, “The chili cook-off is a wonderful opportunity that showcases our 4-H’ers and the life skills they’ve learned.”
Pleasant added that the annual Chili Cook-off event is about more than just making a delicious pot of chili.
“Our kids learn teamwork, communication, presentation, and speaking skills,” she said. “Additionally, many work closely with friends and family to perfect their recipes allowing those relationships to build and become stronger. This event also brings our community together, allowing our volunteers, donors and supports the opportunity to interact with our youth.”
More than a hundred and fifty residents were present throughout the event, some even taking some chili home with them at the end of the night.
But the chili was not
all that was enjoyed that night.
“It’s a great function for the community and gives the opportunity for the kids to be involved in their community,” 4-H dad, Matthew Lewis said. “It’s also a good fundraiser for 4-H.”
The evening ended with a dessert auction where everything from fried apple pies, cakes, cupcakes, brownies, fudge, and coated popcorn went up for auction.
All proceeds are used in the coming year to conduct more STEM projects, communication lessons and build life skills in our children.
The community is now looking forward to the event next year.