Do you have a winning Chili Verde recipe, or a traditional red chili recipe that leaves your tongue on fire? Enter the 2014 Old Town Temecula Western Days Chili Cookoff on May 18, and you could win $500 cash for traditional red or $300 for Chili Verde. Plus, Temecula's Chili Cookoff is a Regional International Chili Society (ICS) sanctioned cookoff where winners automatically qualify for the World’s Championships, in Palm Springs, CA this fall. Chili winners also qualify for the World Food Championships in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Prizes are: Red - 1st Place $500 and a plaque, 2nd Place $300, and 3rd Place $200; Chili Verde (Green) - 1st Place $300 and a plaque, 2nd Place $200 and 3rd Place $100. There are also Salsa and People's Choice competitions. Top prize for People's Choice is $125. Restaurants compete in a separate division. Western Days, May 17 and 18, is known for the high noon bank robbery and zany Old West skits. A cast of crazy cowboys openly plot their mischievous ways, announce their intent and then rob The Bank at the corner of Old Town Front Street and Main at high noon.
The Temecula Valley Museum offers cultural entertainment during the Western Days weekend. Saturday's activities include spinning and weaving demonstrations, Judy Taylor and Her All Girl Band - the Wild Oats, and a living history performance "Notable Women of Temecula." Both Saturday and Sunday visitors can experience Temecula History: A Third Grade Perspective, and Western Photography by Miley. Sunday, the gazebo at Sam Hicks Monument Park features Los Californios, song and dance music of early California.
Old Town Temecula features over 100 antique stores, boutiques and curio shops in a charming Old West setting. To visit Old Town Temecula take the 15 Freeway to Rancho California Road or Highway 79 south and follow the signs leading to Old Town Front Street. Public parking is free. For more information call (951) 678-1456. Chili cookoff applications can be downloaded at www.temeculacalifornia.com.