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22nd Annual Nebraska State Chili Cookoff

22nd Annual Nebraska State

Chili Cookoff

Saturday, July 12, 2007

Gering, Nebraska


1st Place Red Chili (Steve 2nd Year)

1st Place Green Chili (Steve

3rd Place Red Chili (Stephanie)    

 The largest and oldest running event in western Nebraska promised to be a great one when mild temperatures drew record crowds for this 22nd annual event.  Cooks from Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Texas, and Arizona gathered to cook up some chili, and to “chow down” on some breakfast burritos served up by Pepe’s Pod’s Great Pepper himself, Kyle Haberman.  This is a tradition that the cooks really enjoy! 

Soon the fires were lit and the smells of spices were drifting through the air.  Man and beast alike were putting their nose skyward to see if they could recognize what the wonderful aroma was and of course, where it was coming from! 

The senses of the crowd were further appeased when the music started and showmanship got underway, further delighting the crowd as it wandered through the cookoff, eager to start the tasting process.  There was electricity in the air as the cooks made their way towards the stage, to turn in their creations.  The crowd knew that soon it would be feasting on Red and Green Chili closely followed by Open Bean and Open Beef categories.  

Soon the crowd was coursing through the cookoff site trying to find that one chili that was unsurpassed.  Everybody had their favorite, but everyone agreed that all of the cooks were winners.

With their bellies full and their minds made up, the crowd settled down to see if the judges agreed with them as to which chili was the best.

And then it was time.  With over 1500 people looking on, the winners were announced.

The State Beef Title went to Shawn Misner of Granby, Colorado

The best Open Beans in Nebraska were handed in by Steve Sorak of Scottsbluff Nebraska

The Nebraska State Green Chili championship for the 4th time, went to Steve Lee of Longmont Colorado.

Scott Harris, of Scottsbluff Nebraska, took the State Title in an extremely close Showmanship contest.

And then it was time for the big one.  Who would walk away with the top prize?  One by one the cooks made their way to the stage as their numbers were called.  The crowd showing their appreciation with thunderous roar of applause for all.

And then there were only 3 places left.

3rd place went to Stephanie Lee of Longmont, Colorado – a first time cook at this event and a first time qualifier for Terlingua! Some say that her grin is now permanently etched on her face.

2nd Place, for the second year in a row, went to Pepe’s Pod’s own Great Pepper – Kyle Haberman, which also qualified him for Terlingua!

And again, for the 2nd year in a row, 1st Place went to Steve Lee of Longmont, Colorado (and Stephanie’s dad)

All, the members of Pepe's Pod should give themselves a pat on the back for a job well done!






And now to the Winners:










Steven Lee

Longmont, Colorado



Kyle Haberman

Gering, Nebraska



Stephanie Lee

Longmont, Colorado



Mike Horton Omaha, Nebraska



Anna Hoffelder Laramie, Wyoming



Bob Blackburn Mitchell, Nebraska



Don Webber Livingston, Texas



Suzy Webber Livingston Texas



Ken Davis Morrill, Nebraska



Mike Brunner Scottsbluff, Nebraska



















Steven Lee

Longmont, Colorado



Bill Britton Laramie, Wyoming



Anna Hoffelder Laramie, Wyoming



















Scott Harris Scottsbluff, Nebraska  






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