Light the grill and clean out your cabins.
The Chisholm Trail Steak Challenge is coming to Decatur Sept. 29, and this year the Reunion Grounds will be open to campers.
Event organizer Stephanie Quarles said the planning committee was excited that families would be able to utilize their cabins.
Last year the event was held at the Reunion Grounds, but no one was allowed to stay at their “camps.” Traditionally, they are used only during the Wise County Old Settlers Reunion in July.
But next weekend marks a change in tradition.
“If you have a cabin, you can come and stay Friday and Saturday nights,” Quarles said.
The second annual cookoff is being held almost one month later than last year, and Quarles said it was moved to the last Saturday in September to set it apart from other significant fundraisers. She hopes this will become its annual date.
The event benefits Outside Four Walls, a non-profit organization founded by local teachers that encourages innovative learning and provides educational opportunities outside the classroom.
Almost 30 teams have committed to the competition, and Quarles said teams can sign up as late as Friday, Sept. 28. Cost is $250, and you can enter by calling her at (214) 683-1766 or by visiting the website: www.chisholmtrailsteakchallenge.com.
All teams must arrive Friday night.
“Last year we had a great time on Friday night, and we’re requiring everyone to come in that evening,” Quarles said. “We’re going to have a potluck and a band, just for the cook teams that night.”
Top prize is $3,000, and the public will choose Best in Show for a $300 award. Teams can also enter hors d’oeuvre and dessert competitions.
The event opens to the public 10 a.m. Saturday morning with a wide selection of vendor booths, a washer tournament and a car and bike show.
Booth space is still available for vendors and can be reserved by calling Danielle Scroggins at (214) 563-3166. Cost is $75 for a 10-foot by 10-foot space, and setup is 6:30 to 9 a.m. Saturday.
A washer tournament is at 2 p.m. with registration starting at 1. Cost is $50 per team, and it’s double elimination. Organizer Carey Williams said it will be run like the tournament at the Old Settlers Reunion.
A car and bike show is 4 to 6 p.m. Entry fee is $10. There will be 11 classes and two steak dinners will be awarded to each class winner, plus a Best of Show award. For more information, call Gary Comegys at (940) 255-1065.
Visitors will also be able to catch college football games and the Ranger game during the event. A tricked-out 18-wheeler will be the cornerstone of a sports fan zone where games will be shown all day long, courtesy of Oncor.
There will also be a wine tasting tent where visitors can sample and buy bottles of wine. Several area wineries will be represented.
And from 5:30 to 7 p.m., dinner is served.
A tasting bracelet will be sold for $25, which includes a steak prepared by the team of your choice, a baked potato, salad and “all the fixin’s.” Cook teams will also have samples of their hors d’oeuvres and desserts for the public to try.
Cookoff winners will be announced at 7 p.m.
For more information, visit www.chisholmtrailsteakchallenge.com.