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Photos: Hot Contest in Del Ray Chili Cook Off

Zoraida Rodriguez, Michael Bowles, Lori Swain and Virginia Bush at the 7th Annual DRCA Chili Cook Off. (Photo by Lucelle O’Flaherty)

ALEXANDRIA, VA – “The winners were only separated by five points! That’s how close the voting was,” exclaimed Del Ray Citizens Association President Virginia Bush from the stage as she began announcing this year’s winners in the 7th Annual Del Ray Chili Cook Off.

Bragging rights were up for grabs again in the seventh annual gathering of the neighborhood’s chili makers held February 22 at Commonwealth Academy.  Residents poured in for the beer and tunes by The Okays, but they were there on a mission: to taste and cast their votes for the best meat and meatless chili in the room.

Pat Miler and Police Chief Michael Brown had the tough task tasting chili and deciding the winners. (Photo: Lucelle O’Flaherty)

Police Chief Michael Brown and Agenda:Alexandria’s Executive Director Pat Miller were the official tasting judges, but guests also voted for their favorites.

Drumroll please. And the 2020 Best Chili winners are:

Best Vegetarian Chili:                                         Zoraida Rodriguez

Best Traditional Chili with Meat:                      Michael Bowles

People’s Choice Award                                      Lori Swain for her                                                                                              “Chicken-licious” Chili

Long arms are good for the arm’s length of raffle tickets being sold to benefit Friends of Guest House during the Del Ray Chili Cook Off. (Photo: Lucelle O’Flaherty)

Bobi Bomar and Ellen Patrick of Homes Alexandria sponsored the event, and all proceeds from this year’s Chili Cook Off went to Friends of Guest House, a rehabilitation residential facility in Del Ray assisting women return re-enter the community after incarceration.

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Mary Wadland

Mary Wadland is the Publisher and Editor in Chief of The Zebra Press, founded by her in 2010. Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Mary is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Hollins College in Roanoke, VA and has lived and worked in the Alexandria publishing community since 1987.

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