Chili Blues Cook-Off adds heat to USD Dakota Days

T. Wilson King and a dozen area chefs and are cooking up a tasty celebration of food and music at the Vermillion Area Arts Councils 21st annual Chili Blues Cook-Off on Saturday, Oct. 8.

T. Wilson King

Spicy, mild, vegetarian, and Texas-style, the cooks will have a chili to suit all. The event, starts at 5:30 p.m. at the home of the Vermillion Area Arts Council, the Washington Street Arts Center, 202 Washington Street, Vermillion. The annual event coincides with the University of South Dakotas Dakota Days homecoming celebration.

Chili Blues guests will cast votes for their favorite chili to win the Peoples Choice award. Three judges from the community will also weigh in to award the Judges Choice to their favorite chili concoction. In addition to chili selections, the cook-off will feature a variety of cornbreads, side dishes, and desserts. Pop, beer, and wine will be available for an additional purchase.

T. Wilson King will entertain the hungry guests throughout the evening. T. Wilson grew up in Sioux City, IA, where in high school, he was lead singer in bands playing the latest hits of the Beatles, Rolling Stones, James Brown, and Motown. After two years of service in the Army during the Viet Nam War, he bought a guitar and taught himself to play. He began playing for food and tips on street corners, in bars, coffee shops and health food restaurants, and at house parties, scraping out a living in the San Francisco and Monterey Bay area.

He says, I guess Im what you might call a journeyman. I really dig the blues as well as Hank Williams and Woody Guthrie. I enjoy and have been influenced by all the musical styles. I just mixed them all together and came up with my own recipe, so to speak. My favorite moments are when the music is reaching out and touching the listener somehow and were all having a good time.

Tickets to Chili Blues are $10 for each Vermillion Area Arts Council adult member; $15 for non-member adults; $5 for children ages 11 18, and free for children ages 10 and under.

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