On the 2nd Sunday of October the streets of Downtown West Chester close for a day of food, fun and philanthropy. 50+ chili teams, comprised of restaurants, businesses, hometown cooks and non-profit organizations, set up shop right on the street and cook chili vying for the coveted People’s Choice Award (the best darn chili in Chester County). As the streets fill with the aroma of perfectly seasoned meat and beans thousands of hungry chili fans arrive to shop the amazing array of artisan vendors, visit the kid zone with their families, stop in to the local bars for a brew and most importantly sample all the chili they can eat and cast their vote for the winning recipe. As the day draws to a close and the votes are counted one lucky team is crowned the winner and in addition to bragging rights receives a cash prize of $2,500.

This event that brings families and folks from all over the greater Philadelphia region does so much more than provide a festive way to fill a Sunday afternoon. All the proceeds from the event benefit those in need through the Rotary Club of West Chester whose motto is, “Service Above Self.” Since the West Chester Chili Cook-Off began back in 2002 the Rotary Club of West Chester has raised almost half a million dollars which they have used to do good in the community and world. Specifically, we support agencies that meet folks housing needs, employment and job support and training, health and crisis therapy, victims of abuse and violence, help provide and deliver furniture for veterans and those coming out of shelters, help install water pumps for folks in Senegal, housing for children awaiting surgery for prosthetic limbs, hand and ears, etc. through our support of non-profits locally, nationally and internationally.

Giving Back

Since 1921 The Rotary Club of West Chester has been serving the community and the world through hands on projects and fundraisers. One of the great things about the Chili Cook-Off is its ability to bring the community together for a fun packed day but yet raise the funds needed to help change the lives of others. Be sure to check out the grant ceremony during the event where thousands of dollars in charitable grants are awarded to local non-profits. These organizations address such issues as homelessness, hunger, education, domestic violence, and medical needs. Through the work of dedicated volunteers and friends and neighbors we are able to leave the world a little bit better than we found it each and every day.

Interested in learning more about Rotary? Join us for lunch. We meet every Thursday at noon at the West Chester Golf and Country Club. Comprised of over 100 members our club is filled with local business men and women who are dedicated to Service Above Self. For more information visit our website at: WestChesterRotary.us