Residents at Monte Vista in Mesa recently raised $3,500 for local nonprofit AzBrainfood in the most delicious way: a chili cook off!
On Feb. 26 from 3 to 5 p.m. more than 200 people filled up on chili, enjoyed live music with friends and supported the Mesa nonprofit that provides backpacks of food to hungry school children on the weekends. About 65 percent of Mesa students are eligible for free or reduced lunch and many of these children have very little or no food to eat on the weekends. AzBrainfood seeks to provide these children with enough food for the weekend so that no one goes hungry. Monte Vista has supported AzBrainfood for about six years raising a total of approximately $14,600 to date.
“The first Monte Vista Chili Cook Off was a huge success raising $3,150 for AzBrainfood!” said Brenda Peever, Monte Vista resident and one of the organizers of the cook off. “We are so honored to continue to support AzBrainfood in their mission to provide food for children who need it. Since the beginning of 2016 we have donated about $15,700 to this deserving organization. Today was a great day to support a wonderful cause and fill up on delicious chili.”
Event attendees put their taste buds to the test and tried eight different bowls of chili. Once the votes were cast the very first Monte Vista Chili Cook Off Champion was crowned. Martin Nonhof took home the grand prize – an embroidered chef’s hat, ribbon and trophy filled with gold (chocolate) coins. Even though only one winner was crowned, everyone enjoyed the rest of the afternoon with even more chili and wonderful live music.