Mixer provides big boost for Rib Cook-Off

January 08, 2001|By DORA DEPAOLI, Staff Writer

HOLTVILLE — The upcoming 10th annual Holtville Carrot Festival Rib Cook-Off got a big boost with the help of members of the Holtville Athletic Club, sponsors of the event.

Together with the Holtville Chamber of Commerce board of directors, the HAC had a Rib Cook-Off/kick-off mixer last week at the clubhouse. The cook-off is scheduled for Feb. 4, the day after the Carrot Festival parade.

The mixer was at the newly refurbished HAC building on Zenos Road, with refreshments, entertainment and door prizes enjoyed by guests throughout the evening. Decorations with a Southwest theme were provided by Johnnie Jean Bolin and Phyllis Cason of El Centro and Monica Shelton of Imperial.

Gerry Merten, HAC president, welcomed visitors to the event. Merten said the club is trying to make the Rib Cook-Off a Valleywide event.


"The club is trying to break down the mythical Mason/Dixon line defined by Keystone Road," said Merten.

HAC board member Rudy Schaffner said the club lends a hand whenever possible and would like to see the cities in the Valley united. Schaffner and Doug Byram and chairing the cook-off.

"We would like it to be Imperial Valley against the rest of the world," he said.

The club is helping with events outside Holtville. During Cattle Call the HAC had a booth in the Chili Cook-Off. The Brawley Chamber of Commerce is reciprocating and will have a booth at the Rib Cook-Off. The Brawley Boys and Girls Club will sell advertisement for the cook-off. The Brawley club will earn a percentage of the ads the club sells.

Merten asked those present to spread the word because the event is going to be "really big" this year.

Some of those helping spread the word are Coca-Cola of Imperial Valley, KXO AM/FM Radio of El Centro and Rio Tel. Representing Brawley at the function was Ted Riley, president of the Brawley chamber.

People looking for information about the Carrot Festival and the Rib Cook-Off are invited to check out the Web site put together by Dynamic Corridor Group of Imperial Valley. The Web address is

Donating door prizes for the evening were the Holtville Chamber of Commerce, Farm Credit Services Southwest, Manpower, Holtville Athletic Club, Charlie and Wanda Layton, Quentin and Ellen Burke and Jack and Dorothy Kelly.

Between 35 and 40 teams are expected to participate in the Rib Cook-Off. Last year there were 25 teams. Last year's Rib Cook-Off winners Ed Rodrigues and Ma Lupe's Restaurant, both of Holtville, won the $1,000 judges' choice award. The winners gave the $1,000 prize to the family of a Holtville man who had recently died.

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