Voted the World’s Best Seaside Park

Rides Closed Sunday Sep 18, 20222 Due to Rain.

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Bring your appetite and join the fun as both professional and amateur chefs work their culinary magic and compete for the title of Best Chili!

Cook-Off Schedule

  • 9am-10am: Chef’s prep (no heat)
  • 10am-1pm: Chili cook time
  • 10am: Tasting Kits go on sale
  • 1pm: Public tasting begins
  • 4pm: Winners announced at the Colonnade Stage (beachside of Neptune’s Kingdom)
Spoon stirring chili in pot

Try Some Chili!

Boardwalk admission is free! Just purchase a Tasting Kit to sample chili from dozens of competitors. Tasting Kits are $12 each and include six (6) taste tickets, spoon, cup, and a People’s Choice ballot.

Portion of Proceeds

A portion of the proceeds from Tasting Kit sales will benefit The Sgt. Damon Gutzwiller Memorial. On June 6, 2020, Sergeant Damon Gutzwiller was killed in the line of duty while serving Santa Cruz County. This Memorial at Willowbrook Park will ensure his sacrifice is never forgotten. MORE INFO
Sgt Damon Gutzwiller

Enter a Team!

The competition features four categories:

  • Amateur Red
  • Amateur Vegetarian Red
  • Professional Red
  • Professional Vegetarian Red

Awards are given for Best Chili in each category, plus People’s Choice, Most Tasted, and Best Theme.

Awards include plaques, cash prizes, and bragging rights!

Registration Deadline: October 14, 2022

Enter A Team Team Rules & Info

Team Registration Coming Soon!

Thank you to our Chili Cook-Off Sponsors

2021 Chili Cook-Off Results

Best Professional Red

  1. East Side Eatery Death Wish Chili
  2. Malone’s Grille
  3. Big Sur Smokehouse – Alila Ventana

Best Amateur Red

  1. DPD BBQ
  2. 4 Men and a Clam
  3. Hubbell Trouble Chili

Best Professional Vegetarian

  1. Bull Pitt Chili
  2. Ric’s Righteous Veg

Best Amateur Vegetarian

  1. Rugged Coast
  2. Bean There, Done That

People’s Choice Professional:

East Side Eatery Death Wish Chili

People’s Choice Amateur:


Most Tasted Professional:

Bull Pit Chili

Most Tasted Amateur:

Cracker’s Honky Tonk Chili

Best Theming

  1. Cracker’s Honky Tonk Chili
  2. Rock n Roll Chili Bowl
  3. Bull Pit Chili

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