The International Chili Society took the World’s Championship Chili Cookoff to West Virginia this year leaving chili lovers in the Manchester area hungry for something spicy in early October. The New England Lodging and Restaurant Association and the City of Manchester have partnered up to bring the New England Chili Classic to Veterans Park for the weekend of October 13th and 14th. But chili isn’t the only thing on the agenda for the weekend.
There’s more than just great food at this classic. The two day event will be bringing you six different bands from across the region on the main stage. Saturday’s lineup has all original artists starting with the Jazzy Ali Beaudry, then Roots artist Cody James and closing out the day with Evan Goodrow. The music flows into Sunday and beginning the day will be Earthtone Artist Ross Livermore, followed by the Beatles Tribute Band Walrus Gumboot and closing out the musical day will be an area favorite cover band Mama Kicks.
Sunday will also bring you music from the Delta Dental Family Entertainment stage with Breje and Milling Around.
Besides music and chili there will be plenty of other things going on over the weekend. While this event isn’t sanctioned by the ICS, there are a couple of contests that won the hearts of festival goers for the past two years and have to be played out. Mr Hot Sauce and Ms Chili Pepper contests are back! These aren’t your typical beauty contests and are filled with fun and zaniness! Mr. Hot Sauce will be crowned on Saturday while Ms. Chili Pepper will be crowned on Sunday.
How about those favorite New Hampshire sports team mascots! Yes, Fungo, from the NH Fishercats and Max, from the Manchester Monarchs will be on hand to greet everyone. Max is hoping you will stop by and wish the Monarchs luck on the upcoming season as the countdown to the season opener is ticking.
Let us not forget the Footrace for the Fallen that will actually kick off the festivities on Sunday. The Footrace for the Fallen is a 5K road race to honor Manchester Police Officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.
While it may not be the Shoot and Holler contest, but the Jalapeno eating contest should be allot of fun! If you don’t get enough on Saturday, come back on Sunday for the Chili Dog eating contest.
The schedule of events is long and this inaugural event looks to be allot of fun. Aside from all the demonstrations, competitions, and performances that will be happening over the weekend there will also be celebrity meet and greets with Billy Costa and Mary Ann Esposito. If you’re in Manchester this weekend, Veterans Park looks to be the place to be.
The Chili classic runs from Noon to 6:00 pm on both Saturday and Sunday. The awards ceremony is due to take place between 5:00 and 6:00 pm on Sunday at the Main Stage with special guests Mike Morin from WZID and Billy Costa.
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