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Messiah’s annual Chili Cook off  was combined with a good old fashioned Halloween Party this past Sunday, the 27th. What a fun event it was for many members who attended.   Fellowship Co-Chair  Hillary Warren and her costumed crew gave our Parish Hall quite the makeover with the wall streamers, banners, and hand-made table laterns and decorations. A fun playlist of spooky / silly songs playing in the background kept the kids wiggling and toes tapping.  

DJ and Hillary Warren
The event began with the “hotly” contested Chili Cook off.  Messiah taste testers had to whittle their favorite chili recipe down to just two entries and cast their vote for Best Chili  and Hottest Chili.  This was no easy task as each of the twelve chili contenders that were brought were delicious and had their own unique personality and flavor.  The chili was served with all the fixins; cheese, cornbread, sour cream and Fritos for a little crunch.  First place for Best Chili was awarded to Michelle Strand  (her name will be engraved on the impressive trophy shown below). Second place was awarded to Larry Ryan’s chili recipe.  Bragging rights stayed in the Strand Family with Stephen Strand taking home the prize for Hottest chili.

“Harry Potter” Samples several Chili recipes.
Our Chili Cook off trophy and prize table.

As folks finished dining, the youngsters were led away to enjoy some organized fun and games led by members of the Messiah Youth team while the rest of the diners finished their meals and enjoyed some fellowship time.  A photo area was set up so that we could capture the wonderfully creative costumes from the party.  Note: A link to view the rest of the pictures from the event will be sent out with this week’s MLC E-News Message. 

We’re seeing Double!  The Cella Family
Prize winning couple! The Strands

The kids returned and took the stage for the costume contest and then the votes were collected and tallied.  Prizes for children’s costumes were given to Chelsea McCarthy, Hanna Seitz, Abigail Warren and Bridie Ryan.   Prizes for the adult costume contest went to Stephen Strand (tied with DJ Warren) for Best Male,  Claire Stand for Best Female; Ben Cella won Funniest Male (tied with Greg Kilby) and Leigh Cella  took home the prize for Funniest Female.

It was wonderful to see our Parish Hall bursting with life, laughter and a joyful spirit. It was after all Reformation Sunday, a day to celebrate our church heritage and Martin Luther’s teachings about Christian faith.  Our faith in Christ Jesus is a precious gift God gives us freely to help us live our lives to the fullest. So take the Gift. Unwrap it! Use it! Enjoy it.  When we reflect the true light of His Holy Spirit we are beacons of hope and grace to others during times of darkness, so remember to shine!

Photos and Text by Meredith Kilby