Tom Daniel Holiday Chili Cookoff

Event Information

Join us Monday, November 19th in the Exchange Street Plaza for a flavorful evening with memories you’ll savor throughout the season. Your $5 ticket allows you to sample from over 30 competitors’ entries and vote for your favorite. Ticket and drink sales go toward funding the Christmas lights downtown.


Rules & Regulations

All competitors are required to cook ten gallons of chili in lieu of an entry fee. Competitors may enter more than one chili, but must have 10 gallons of each. Failure to meet this requirement will result in the entry not being judged.  All competitors are expected to be on site by 3 pm, and must attend the Competitors Meeting at 3:30 p.m. The two chili categories are listed below.

Traditional Chili

Defined as any kind of meat or combination of meats, cooked with red chili peppers, various spices and other ingredients, except for BEANS or other fillers, which are strictly forbidden.

Non-Traditional Chili

Defined as any type of chili that does not qualify as traditional, such as white, green, or vegetarian chili. Any chili that contains beans will be in this category as well.


Cooking may take place on or off the premises. If cooking on-site, setups will be available starting at 9am. Judging will take place at 4pm. Each contestant will have approximately a 10×10 ft area. We encourage you to decorate as it draws people to your booth (and you could receive a trophy for your efforts)!

Spaces are limited, so get your entry form in soon!


1st Place Traditional (No Bean) Chili – Trophy and $200 Cash
2nd Place Traditional (No Bean) Chili – Trophy and $100 Cash

1st Place Non-Traditional Chili – Trophy and $200 Cash
2nd Place Non-Traditional Chili – Trophy and $100 Cash

*People’s Choice Award – Trophy
Best Decorated Booth Award – Trophy

*People’s Choice Award is determined by audience favorite. Each ticket purchase counts as one vote. Encourage your fans to purchase extra tickets so they can vote on their favorite chili multiple times.


For further info, you may contact any of the following:

Suzanne Tucker – 501.624.3370
Michelle Harrison – 501.844.7722
Mackenzie Simon – 501.318.7128

Submit entry forms via email to or by mail to
PO Box 6272, Hot Springs National Park, AR 71902