“The Chili Cookoff, which attracts a thousand attendees or more, and it has proven to be a very popular event,” said Glen Smith, chairman of the event. “[There’s] good chili to sample from more than 30 competitors, valuable prizes for attendees, live music, ice cream, cheese biscuits, and chili dogs, children’s activities, elaborate booths, and festive costumes. A lot of fun for a good cause.”
In addition to the many programs the Exchange Club has throughout the year to support child abuse prevention and youth development, they use their resources to collaborate with service organizations such as Miracle League of Tuscaloosa, Turning Point, West Alabama Food Bank, and East Tuscaloosa Family Resource Center.
“Not only does the club raise money at the Chili Cookoff, which we give back to the community, the club also sponsors programs that honor first responders, our law enforcement officers, our veterans, and people in the community that go the extra mile to better our community,” said Tommy Nettles, a member of the McAbee Construction Chili Cookoff team.
The family-friendly event will be held in the Bryant Conference Center on Saturday, Feb. 9, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. This year, admission to the Chili Cookoff is free, however donations are requested to help support the Exchange Club’s mission of building a strong, safe community. Attendees will be able to vote for their favorites in several categories and meet many of the community members that keep the Exchange Club running.
“The Exchange Club is one of the few organizations left that still puts ‘boots on the ground,’” said Joe Boteler, Chairman of the Tuscaloosa County Natural Resources Planning Committee and Cookoff participant. “They take an active interest in the community with their focus on the youth. While their primary goal is the prevention of child abuse, they also support programs to promote character and patriotism.”