chili-beerIf you are into Chili and Beer, then Saturday you need to be in Nitro. The fourth annual Wagging Tails Chili Challenge sees this chili cookoff move to a new location, and partner up with the Nitro Ales Craft Beer Festival for a full day of gastric adventures at Nitro’s Living Memorial Park on the corner of Second Avenue and 21st Street in Nitro. It all happens Saturday, November 11, from 9 AM to 5 PM. The public is invited to sample the chili and craft beer beginning at noon. For more details visit their Facebook page.

I don’t normally write about beer events here in PopCult. Your PopCulteer is beer-illiterate and can’t understand the appeal of such stuff, but I am in a distinct minority there and this is for a really good cause. Besides, you can indulge in the chili and other goodies without partaking in the brew.  All proceeds from the event go to Dog Bless, a local volunteer animal rescue group that has fostered, transported, provided medical care and found new homes for more than 3,000 dogs since 2012.

This is an International Chili Society sanctioned event, and the winner will go on to represent Wagging Tails at the World Chili Cookoff next year. What impresses me the most about this event is that it’s happening at a time of the year when sane people would actually want to eat chili. I keep seeing chili cookoffs in the middle of Summer, in 90-degree-plus weather, and for the life of me I can’t understand why anybody in their right mind would want to make or eat chili then. But now it’s perfect chili weather, so this event couldn’t be timed any better.

It’s not just chili and beer. You will find local food trucks, Island Teriyaki, Jonesy’s and Old School Concessions, so if chili is not your cup of tea, you can chow down on barbecue, hot dogs, corn dogs, and a variety of fine examples of food-truck cuisine.

Plus local favorites, Hurl Brickbat, will be providing music and there will be inflatables to keep the kids occupied.

Chili sampling tickets will set you back 50 cents each and general admission to the Nitro Ales Brew Festival is a measly ten bucks. That gets you entry and two craft brews, with additional beers costing $2 each. For more information on entering the Wagging Tails Chili Challenge, call 304-382-3305, email or visit the event’s Facebook page. For info about the Nitro Ales Craft Beer Festival, contact Tim Arnott at 304-545-5845 or Donna Boggs at 304-549-8823. Tickets can be purchased in advance HERE.