Rotary chili open raises money for charities

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The Rotary combined the money raised during their Night at the Races event and their Chili Open and will allocate the funds to 16 local charities. Pictured, two Rotary members compete in the cornhole tournament during the Chili Open.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The Poland Rotary set up a "closest to the pin" game where people took turns trying to get the ball closest to an object. They also had a basket raffle.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.High school students from Poland and Lowellville competed in a chili eating contest during the Poland Rotary's Chili Open. Pictured are Poland High School students, the winning team, chowing down on three cups of chili, four saltine crackers and a can of soda.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The Poland Rotary had their 33rd annual Chili Open at Bedford Trails Golf Course and Restaurant on March 3. Pictured are the board members of the Rotary, from left, Jim Loboy, Andrew Grishcow, Shelly Duchek, Mary Ann Carano, David Moliterno and Dan Dull. Dull and Carano served as cochairs for the event.

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Neighbors | Zack Shively.The Poland Rotary's Chili Open included a mock golf course for the Rotary members to golf during the day. Pictured are Dario Toro, Derek Mihalcin, John Mihalcin and Matt Smoot.

By ZACK SHIVELY

zshively@vindy.com

The Poland Rotary had their annual Chili Open at Bedford Trails Golf Course and Restaurant on March 3 to raise money for 16 local charities.

The Rotary had the restaurant open and made food and drinks throughout the day. They participated in a mock golf course, a hitting contest and a cornhole tournament.

Dan Dull, the co-chair for the Chili Open, said that the Rotary has the event for two reasons, “the fellowship aspect ... and to give back to the charities.“ He said the weather was great to have the event as they have had to do the Chili Open in the snow in previous years.

The Rotary had a few events that lasted throughout the morning and into the afternoon. Their mock golf course had 18 holes, but the course was smaller and easier than a normal course. The driving competition asked members to hit a golf ball nearest to an object. They had a basket raffle with different prizes donated by local businesses.

They also had an eating competition between Lowellville and Poland high school students. Each team had five members and each member had to eat three cups of chili, four saltine crackers and drink a can of soda. Poland’s team ate faster and won the competition, finishing in two minutes and nine seconds.

After the eating competition, the Rotary members competed in a cornhole tournament. They played two games at a time just outside of the restaurant.

The money raised from this event will be awarded to 16 charities in May, along with the funds from the Rotary’s “Night at the Races“ event on Jan. 26.

Dull and Mary Ann Carano chaired both events, which the Rotary considers as one large fundraiser. They have had the Chili Open for 33 years and the Night at the Races for three.

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