Community Events News and Events Reno Route 395 Route 80


Reno, Nev. – Preparations are underway for the Grand Sierra Chili & Beer Festival, which returns to Grand Sierra Resort and Casino (GS, Friday, Oct. 21 through Sunday, Oct. 23. This year’s festival features more than 200 award-winning chili cookers from around the world as part of the 50th Annual World’s Championship Cookoff, a Youth Division Chili Cookoff, more than a dozen craft beers from around the region, a local Firehouse Chili Challenge and the Chef’s Chili Cookoff Challenge presented by Yelp! and headline entertainment that includes Cherry Poppin’ Daddies and blues rock musician Shane Dwight. The festival will be held inside the Silver State Pavilion and extend out to the southeast parking lot. Tasting packages for the event are on sale now. For pricing or more information,,, #ChiliBeerFest..
As part of the three-day festival, GSR has brought together some of the region’s top brewers including Brewers Cabinet, Great Basin Brewing Co., High Sierra Brewing Company, Pigeon Head Brewery, Record Street Brewing Company, Tonopah Brewing Co.. Under the Rose Brewing Company and Virginia City Brewery. These brewers will provide some of their best Fall brews on Saturday and Sunday. Additionally, GSR will be serving a series of popular beers throughout the three-day event including American classics like Blue Moon, Coors and Coors Banquet, national crafts including Hangar 24, Leinenkugel Oktoberfest, Saint Archer IPA, Sierra Nevada and Third Shift Amber Lager as well as Mexican cervezas Corona Light, Negra Modelo and Pacifico.
On Saturday, northern Nevada’s firefighters will return for their second year in the Firehouse Chili Challenge. The competition is at noon and will feature chili recipes from six different fire departments in the area. The winner will receive a trophy and $1,000 donated to the charity of their choice. Once the competition concludes, those who have purchased tasting packages will have the opportunity to taste all of the firehouse chili from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. and vote for a “People’s Choice” winner.
Then, on Sunday, local chefs from some of the top restaurants in the region will showcase their best chili recipes for a chance to win $1,000 for charity. The Chef’s Chili Cookoff, presented by Yelp!, includes Chef Charlie Abowd from Café at Adele’s, Trevor Leppek and Ryan Goldhammer from Pignic and Noble Pie Co., Jesus “Chuy” Gutierrez of Mari & Chuy’s Mexican Restaurant as well as chefs from BJ’s Barbecue, Bam!Dog Righteous Hot Dogs, Butcher’s Kitchen Char B Que, Lucky Beaver, The Depot and more. The competition begins at noon with “People’s Choice” tasting and voting from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m.
The World’s Championship competition will be broken up into three parts based upon chili classification – Homestyle, Chilli Verde and Traditional Red. Friday, Oct. 21 from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m., Championship Chili competitors will battle to be Homestyle Chili Champion. On Saturday, Oct. 22, from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m., the chili competition will focus on Chili Verde. Saturday also includes the Jim Heywood ‘Yutes Division’ Chili Cookoff where chili cooks under the age of 18 will compete for their share of a $2,000 prize and the chance to be on a Food Network television pilot. And, on Sunday, the Championship Chili cookers return to compete with their traditional red recipes from noon until 4 p.m.
The festival also includes more than 75 craft vendors and an exciting entertainment lineup including popular swing band the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies. The full lineup includes:
Saturday, Oct. 22:

Indoor Stage
1:00pm – 2:15pm: Rustler’s Heat
2:45pm – 3:45pm: Branded
4:00pm – 5:00pm: Shane Dwight
5:30pm – 7:00pm: Cherry Poppin’ Daddies
Outdoor Stage
1:30pm – 2:45pm: Fairlines
3:15pm – 5:30pm: Jelly Bread
6:00pm – 7:00pm: Fresh

Sunday, Oct. 23:

Indoor Stage
Noon – 2:30pm: Hindsight
3:00pm – 4:00pm: Spazmatics
Outdoor Stage
Noon – 12:45pm: Buddy Emmer Blues
1:15pm – 4:00pm: The Novelists

A full schedule including additional entertainment, participating breweries and more is available online. For more information visit or follow the trend on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram #ChiliBeerFest.

About the author

Charlie REC magazine - Charlie Pankey ~ Publisher

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