It's that time of year again, where the streets in Downtown Marion are lined with over a dozen chili teams, exquisite vehicles, food vendors and all kinds of activities! Join us on Friday, July 18th, from 7pm til 11pm for the 28th Annual Chili Cook - off and Shine n' Show Car Show, along with tons of other fun things to do in downtown Marion, VA!
Back for its 28th year, chili teams will compete on Main Street for over $500 in cash and trophies, and most importantly, bragging rights for "The Best Chili in Town." Local judges will score the concoctions and determine which chili is the best, and worst. The public is also encouraged to participate by purchasing a "keepsake chili bracelet" for only $5, where they are able to taste all the chili concoctions and determine which chili they like best. Each purchase guarantees a chili ticket, where the public can vote for their favorite chili and team. Tasting begins at 8:00pm and will last until teams run out of chili. Awards Ceremony for winners will begin at 9:30pm.
In addition to the chili cook-off, Friday night will feature the annual "Show n' Shine" car, truck and motorcycle Cruise In on Main Street, sponsored by Susan Bell Nationwide and FM94. Participants in the Cruise In showcase their vehicles and commemorative plaques are rewarded to the first 30 participants. Trophies for "People's Choice" and "Best in Show" will be awarded at 9:30pm. Entry fee is $25, where $5 will be donated to the Iron Warriors Club. Along with the car show, Wythe Raceway will have their cars parked on Broad Street in downtown to show off!
By popular request, "Phantom," which is one of the region's most popular "good-time music" bands, will again take the stage for the downtown street dance from 7pm til 11pm. Bring a chair and your dancin' shoes and enjoy the music!
Select food vendors will be set up on the street just beside the Court House, offering funnel cakes, ice cream, snow cones, cotton candy, corndogs, kettle korn and more!
Downtown restaurants will also be open, so come hungry! Whether you want a sit-down meal or want something to grab and go, you can find it in downtown Marion! Select businesses will even have tents set up outside their restaurants to sell food if you're in a hurry as well!
And if you're looking to dine somewhere different, The Collins House Inn Bed & Breakfast is offering a dinner special the night of the event. Dinner starts at 6:30pm and cost is $19.95 per person. Menu includes stuffed pork loin, green beans, baked apples, homemade rolls and more! Reservations are a must, so call (276)781-0250 if you're interested!
Smyth County Livestock 4-H club will be selling tickets for a chance to win a Gator, S.C.A.L.E. will be selling glow-in-the-dark necklaces, Smyth County Humane Society will be doing face painting for the kids, and Piggy Su will be there for you to kiss for St. Judes. That's right, a pig kissing boothe! Woodmen of the World will also be set up doing free fingerprints for kids, too!
Back again this year is the Mountain View Ford and SpaceWalk "Kids Zone" with bounce houses, an obstacle course and even a monster truck for kids to play on! And, it's FREE!
Marion Volunteer Fire Department is also sponsoring a Cornhole Tournament on Royal Oak Presbyterian Church parking lot on Main Street. Sign up begins at 5:45pm and matches will start at 6:30pm. Cost is $10 per person and includes a blind draw for teammates.
How about a food challenge? Instead of watching competitors chomp down as much as they can in a set amount of time, we're putting a new spin on the well-known food challenges and tying it in with our iconic Dip Dog Stand! Ten lucky contestants will be preselected to compete, and each will have five mustard-heavy Dip Dogs to consume as rapidly as possible. The one who finishes first, wins!
Qualifying: Radio personalities CJ & Cubbs will incorporate the Great American Dip Dog Challenge into their afternoon show as a top promoted event. They will qualify the contestants. Nine folks will be encouraged to enter at the Dip Dog Stand, on the Dip Dog and CJ & Dubbs Facebook page. The very last spot will be filled the night of the event on site. (In the event not all ten qualifiers are available at contest time, we would select contestants from the on-site registration to participate) LIMIT IS TEN COMPETITORS. For more information and the list of rules, click here.
On Saturday, July 19, the Marion Regional Farmers Market is open from 8am til 12noon. Stop by and shop local! They'll have fresh produce, hand-made crafts, soaps, baked goods, and more!
On Saturday night at 7:30pm, The Lincoln Theatre in downtown Marion will host a concert with a regionally known band, Black Mountain Shine performing! Tickets are $10 at the door.
Then, stick around for a concert at 27 Lions Restaurant featuring locally known musicians, Jarid Reedy and Rusty Waddell! Music starts at 9:00pm.
The Town of Marion will offer FREE shuttle service between downtown and the 41st Annual Hungry Mother Arts & Crafts Festival (sponsored by the Art League of Marion) all weekend long as well. Shuttle pick up will be in front of Appalachian Spirit Gallery, located at 144 West Main Street in downtown Marion, and will drop off at the festival at Hungry Mother State Park. Shuttle services will run 10am - 6pm on Friday and Saturday, and 10am - 5pm on Sunday.
For more information about the weekend events, call Olivia Hall (276)783-4190 or visit www.marionva.org.
This event is sponsored by: The Town of Marion, Marion Downtown, FM94, Mountain View Ford, Susan Bell at Nationwide, The Bank of Marion, Smyth County Court House, Wells Fargo, Marion Volunteer Fire Department and CJ & Dubbs/102.5FM
28th Annual Chili Cook-Off & Shine n' Show Car Show - Friday, July 18, 2014
• 5:45pm - Registration starts for Corn Hole Tournament
• 6:00pm - Shine n' Show Car Show registration starts
• 7pm-11pm - LIVE music by Phantom on Courthouse steps
• 8pm - Chili Bracelets go on sell for Chili Cook-off
• 8:45pm - The Great American Dip Dog Challenge (located near Town Hall)
• 9:30pm - Announcement of Chili Championship, Car Show and Dip Dog Challenge winners
• Special sales and menus at participating businesses
• Shuttle services offered from downtown to HMSP ALL weekend long!
For information, contact Olivia Hall at (276) 783-4190
Main Street in Downtown Marion, Virginia