Newbies and veterans face-off at the Oregon Trail Days Chili Cook Off

Many are participating in the 2019 Chili Cook Off (Source KNEP)
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GERING, Neb. - (KNEP) - New and veteran chili cookers are hoping the judges pick their finished product at this year’s Oregon Trail Days Chili Cook Off.

Bill Schlaepfer, who is organizing the event, stated they have one participant who drives from Omaha each year to participate. This year’s cook off also saw a few newbies as well.

One family came from Texas to take part in the event. They have won chili cook off events in the past and wanted to give the Oregon Trail Days cook off a try. The family isn’t the only one to partake in the festivities for the first time.

Greg Brown is a Gering native and always went to the cook off but decided this year to actually become a cooker. He enlisted the help of his neighbor to get the chili recipe and is working with tri tip steak for the beef division of the competition.

Brown is hoping the judges taste the flavor from the smokers he is using. He added the judges can’t upset him because it’s just a great time to be out there.

Like so many taking in the Oregon Trail Days festivities, Brown believes it’s the best community celebration in the state. He added if people haven’t been to the chili cook off, it should be a bucket list item while at OTD.