Sunday, February 27, 2011

Second Annual Las Jaibas Chili Cook-off!

Sunday Feb. 27th, 2011

Yesterday was the big event.  Last year Connie had come up with the idea for a chili cook-off to raise money for the La Mision orphanage and this year we decided to carry on with our new tradition.  This is the orphanage that John and Jeri have been involved with over the years and now the Las Jaibas winter visitors are helping with it as well.    When Pat was still here she and Connie got busy organizing this years  event.  As Frank, Sandi, Eric and I were going to be away for two weeks it was decided to delay the event to the end of February because Sandi and I were going to cook.  Last year it was at the end of January but it has been cold and foggy this year so in the end later was better.  Please refer to my Dec. 19, 2010 post for pictures and info about the La Mision orphanage. 

As Pat and Jack had to go home for medical reasons Connie carried on with help from John and Jeri who have had lots of experience with Chili cook-offs.  The event was published in the Pacific Pearl and also Maz Info so there was plenty of publicity.  Even so we were uncertain as to how many people would show up because tourism in Mazatlan is so low this year.  The drug gangs will have to stop gunning each other down on the streets in broad daylight before there will be an upswing in tourists! 

Connie and Jeri decided to order t-shirts with the 100 peso entry fees if anyone wanted one and they turned out to be really cute.  A nice souvenir but I would have preferred an apron so I will order one of those.  Connie made up little packs with a ballot, spoon and cup for tasting the chili and to get one you had to pay 30 pesos although you could donate more if you wished, which some people did.  Thank-you.

  There was a beer, water soft drink tent set up where Arnoldo used to have his outdoor restaurant and the profits from this were also donated to the orphans.  Thanks to park owner Felipe for organizing this! 


The day started with everyone setting up their tables in our designated order from 1 to 13.  We had 13 people cooking and some were from our park and some came from other parks.  A good mix of people and chili. 

I, like most people had cooked my chili a couple of days ahead so the flavor would improve and today it was just a matter of reheating it.  I had a large crock pot ready but in the end I put a bigger pot inside it because it wouldn’t all fit. 

At this point Sam showed up at the door asking if Eric wanted to go for a ride.   He offered to let Eric try out his bike as Eric is looking to buy a new more comfortable one so he was eager to try Sam’s Ultra Limited Electra glide.  They set out at about 10am and I thought they’d be back for the cook-off to vote.  Turns out they weren’t.

We were all set up and ready to go by 12:30 and the people started to roll in.  What a crowd!  Betty was collecting the money and she was one busy lady.

Thanks Betty! 


There were way more people than last year and I was worried that I wouldn’t have enough chili to go around.  I was #11 and told everyone I had every day chili that I always fed to my family.  Lots of beans and vegetables (celery, mushrooms, corn and usually canned green beans too.)  I got positive reviews and I was happy with that.  I was right between Sandi (who told everyone that hers’ was the best chili they would have all day!) and Marion so I was in good company.



Kathy and Sandi ….ready to serve.



George and Sharen with their big boy chili and dispenser of tequila.  I ribbed George about his “dorky hat” but all in fun!  Actually, he looked quite cute!


Helene with her vegetarian chili ready to compete.  It was delicious!


Vegetarian chili!


John & Nate’s chili with Tequila and appetizers!


Hannah & Marion


Eunis from Las Jaibas and Bonnie and her friend from  Punta Cerritos  on the right!


Lorraine from Punta Cerritos.

The park was full of people having fun, tasting chili, drinking beer and tequila and just having a good time. 





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By 2pm lots of people were out of chili although Sandi and I and a couple of others were still serving.  At this point they stopped counting new ballots because not everyone had chili left so the ballots were totaled up. 




So, who won?


Aren’t the aprons cute!  1st, 2nd and 3rd on them as well.  What a great souvenir of a great event!


Third place Bonnie from Punta Cerritos.


Bonnie 3rd, Georgia 2nd, Nate and John 1st!

The third place winner was Bonnie Dunn from the Punta Cerritos RV park, second place was Georgia Lacey from the Mar Villa RV park and once again first place went to our very own John Pfister and his friend Nate Andrews for the second year in a row.  Congratulations all! 



Connie our organizer on the left and hardworking Betty sitting at the table.


Betty gets a break from collected donation money!

There were about 150 people in attendance and the park was really hopping.  Everyone enjoyed themselves and a few diehards continued on at the beer tent long after everyone had gone home. 



Lots of happy people drinking Pacifico and relaxing in the sun.


Everyone relaxing and all done for 2011!

A good time was had by all and next year we’ll all make more chili so we can serve more people and make more money for the children.  In the end we raised about $700.00 that will be put to good use feeding and clothing the children who live at the orphanage. 

A huge success and huge thanks to the organizers, people who cooked chili and also those who  attended and donated time and money to this worthwhile cause. 

Thanks also to Hal for sharing these great photos with me so I could post them on the blog. 

So, the bottom line is we collected 8,160 pesos for the children’s home!  This includes the attendance fees, beer and extra donations.  The money was taken to the home yesterday by John, Jeri and Connie and the home was astounded at the amount that we had collected!   Everyone who participated in any way should give themselves a pat on the back.  Good job everyone!


  1. We had a good time and enjoyed the Chili and the company of good friends.
    Andy & Wendy

  2. What an awesome event for charity, so kind of your group to do that. Joan