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Lil John Is Champ Of Celebrity Chili Cookoff

The 3rd annual Solon Celebrity Chili Cook-Off raised more than $3,000 for charities.

Lil John Rinaldi, most famous for his role on "Big Chuck and Lil John," can also cook a mean batch of chili.

Rinaldi, who owns Rinaldi Jewelry in Solon, was voted champion of the Solon Celebrity Chili Cook-Off, held Saturday at Solon United Methodist Church.

Rounding out the top three were Solon Police Chief Chris Viland in second place and, yours truly, Solon Patch Local Editor Chris Mazzolini in third place.

The other celebrities were Cure for Cancer Spokesman Vince Miozzi, The Gaitway Equestrian Team (with Willy the Horse), Cleveland State assistant basketball coach Jermaine Kimbrough, Solon Mayor Susan Drucker, whose chili was so popular residents were scraping it from the bottom of the pan (see photo) and Solon High Principal Erin Short.

Most importantly, the event raised about $3,100 for eight charities. They are:

  • Solon Recreation's Blue Ribbon Program
  • National Black Child Development Institute
  • American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
  • Womankind - Pregnancy Support
  • Solon 100
  • The Gaitway Equestrian Team
  • Hands, Hearts and Homes Outreach
  • Lymphoma & Leukemia Society

Thanks to everyone who came out, had fun and supported some good causes. And a big thank you to Scott Low and all the great volunteers over at Solon United Methodist Church, who put on a wonderful event.

Morgan Day October 01, 2012 at 12:12 PM
Aw, I was hoping for a Patch win! But third place is pretty great too. Congrats, Chris!
Joe Strailey October 01, 2012 at 01:42 PM
Nice work, Chris!!
Susan Ruiz Patton October 01, 2012 at 03:41 PM
Hey Chris! What's your recipe? Oh, and congrats!
Joan Hageman, H3O Secretary October 01, 2012 at 09:08 PM
From everyone at Hands, Hearts, and Homes Outreach, a huge thank you and God Bless. That chili was awesome--we couldn't be more proud. Thank you so very very much Chris. Congratulations to John R. and Chris V. of course; but we'll be back in force next year!

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