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Chili Cookoff and Monster Truck show set for Sunday

By Staff | Feb 20, 2020

This Sunday, AMVETS Post 65 is hosting the second annual SWFL Military Museum & Library and Wolfhound’s Legacy’s Chili Cookoff and Monster Truck show.

The battle for chili supremacy takes place at the Military Museum & Library from 1-4 p.m. and features food trucks, vendors, a corn hold tournament, hole in one challenge and children’s games.

Last year’s event brought many residents to the museum and raised awareness for veteran organizations and how they benefit the community, so, organizers decided to bring it back for another round of good eats and good times.

“As an inaugural event we brought about 800 people to our parking lot, 348 people inside the Museum and over 231 of these were new to us,” said Denise Wood, special events coordinator at the museum and library. “Many of them never knew we were here. Some knew we were, but did not realize what we are. Others told us they had wanted to visit, but never had the chance.”

The chili cookoff will feature 20 contestants and seven restaurants: Blue Agave, Harbour Catering, Ford’s Garage, Rust’s Raw Bar & Grill, Big 10 Tavern, Annie’s and Big Blue Brewing.

“The individuals are look forward to showing their talents to the town and enjoy having their chili rated by the professionals,” Wood said. “This will be a great competition.”

The esteemed panel of judges will be Chef Wil Wilson, owner and sculptor of Brenton’s Ice Sculptures, Chef Joe Henning of Harbour Catering and Kevin Pawlowski of Rusty’s Raw Bar & Grill.

Jim and Linda Thompson, owners of Savage 4×4, will be taking care of your monster truck needs and are supporters of veteran causes in the Southwest Florida area.

Live entertainment will be provided by Jukebox Prophets.

The event is free for admission and restaurant entries will be judged by their sales to the public.

Wood said events like this help highlight local veteran advocates and shines a light on all they provide to a veteran-rich Cape Coral and Southwest Florida community.

“Smaller groups sometimes don’t get that ‘pat on the back’ that the large groups do,” Wood said. “We have a large building that serves as home to many small groups. They support us and we support them. We are a cultural facility that is also a community and social facility.

“Many do not know what our AMVETS Post 65 means to this and surrounding communities. For the last six years this small group of 21 very hardworking veterans have collected school supplies for children at the start of the school year and toys at Christmas. These giveaways reach hundreds of children. They also provide services to veterans.

“Wolfhound Legacy is also one of our small groups the use the museum for training service dogs for veterans. The veteran trains their own dog and never pays a dime to the group.”

The SWFL Military Museum & Library is at 4820 Leonard St. in Cape Coral.

For more information on the museum, visit www.swflmm.org.

-Connect with this reporter on Twitter: @haddad_cj