Chamber's Chile in October-fest finds new home in downtown Farmington

Mike Easterling
Farmington Daily Times

FARMINGTON — A longtime fall tradition will get a new look this weekend when the Farmington Chamber of Commerce's annual Chile in October-fest event takes place for the first time in Orchard Plaza in downtown Farmington.

The chile cookoff will be held from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1. But chamber president and CEO Jamie Church said the cooks who have entered the contest are expected to begin setting up as early as 6 a.m. Main Street will be blocked from Orchard Avenue to Behrend Avenue to accommodate the hundreds of people who are expected to attend the cookoff.

"We thought it would be fun to highlight all the new improvements to downtown and all the changes," Church said, explaining the decision to move the event from its longtime home in Berg Park. "We've been encouraging downtown merchants to set up sidewalk sales and be open on Saturday."

The cookoff will feature 12 to 13 cooks competing for honors in several categories, with winners being selected by a panel of judges and by members of the public. The $20 entry fee not only entitles event goers to unlimited tastings of chile, it also allows them to vote for their favorites in categories of red, green and cook's choice.

Children ages 12 and younger are admitted free.

The Farmington Chamber of Commerce's annual Chile in October-fest takes place Saturday, Oct. 1 in downtown Farmington.

The event also will feature live music by the band Breezin', a variety of vendors and food trucks, and a beer and wine garden in Orchard Plaza. The cookoff is one of several large events taking place across San Juan County on Saturday, including the Road Apple Rally bicycle race, the Aztec Highland Games and Celtic Music Festival and the Northern Navajo Nation Fair in Shiprock, but Church is expecting a good turnout.

"It's always hard to know, but we estimate about 600 people," she said.

Breezin' performs this weekend during the Farmington Chamber of Commerce's annual Chile in October-fest in Orchard Plaza.

Church also is asking anyone interested in registering for the annual Four Corners Professional Women's Summit planned Thursday, Oct. 13 at the Farmington Civic Center to call her organization directly at 505-325-0279. The event already has reached full registration, she said, but some early registrants have backed out, so a few additional spots have opened.

Anyone interested in attending should call 505-325-0279 as quickly as possible, she said.

Registration for the event is $100 and includes breakfast, lunch and a tote bag. The event includes an evening networking event on Wednesday, Oct. 12, as well as the Oct. 13 summit.

Mike Easterling can be reached at 505-564-4610 or Support local journalism with a digital subscription: