Dear Sun Spots: Longley School is starting to gear up for our fourth annual Chili/Chowder Challenge on April 4 at the Ramada Inn in Lewiston.

We need the help of Sun Spots column readers.

We are preparing our list of participating restaurants/chefs and planning for our raffle gift baskets. We are putting out a call to those in the community who would like to provide items for our baskets. In the past, we’ve received gift certificates, mugs, wines, T-shirts and more. This is a great opportunity for area businesses and service providers to get their names in the spotlight while helping out a great cause – the Longley School here in Lewiston. All restaurants and donors are recognized on the evening’s program and on a poster as guests enter the function room.

We look forward to another successful community activity and thank the community, in advance, for their participation. Those interested in providing items for our raffle baskets, or needing to find out more information, may call Longley School at 795-4120. – Steve Gagne, fifth-/sixth-grade teacher, Longley School, Lewiston.

In addition to responses from readers, for those of you who have not experienced the chili/chowder event, Sun Spots would urge you to mark your calendars for a tasty, tasty treat: Lots of yummy, savory, delectable soups, chilis followed by decadent desserts to tantalize your taste buds.

Sun Spots corresponded with Dan Caron, culinary instructor at Lewiston Regional Technical Center, who notes his students play a large role in this event. It’s a time of learning all about the dining experience from start to finish. Students assist with getting chefs to compete, selling tickets, organizing the judges’ and chefs’ tables and other preparations.

If you’re a restaurant owner and/or chef who would like to participate in this event, contact Caron at 777-3199 or e-mail him at [email protected] Only 27 restaurants are being accepted. The deadline for applications is March 16 and the number of participants is limited.

Those wishing to attend the event may purchase tickets at the Green Ladle, Sun Journal, Rolly’s Diner, DaVinci’s Eatery, Fast Breaks Restaurant, Sun Journal customer service department in Lewiston, Longley School, Youly’s Family Restaurant and most restaurants that compete at the chili chowder challenge. A list of restaurants competing will be published shortly and tickets will be for sale until March 28. Tickets may also be purchased at the door on April 4. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.

Caron notes that while culinary students will not compete this year, they will have a large presence. Up to 27 chefs are expected this year, and that’s with a waiting list. Contest participants will need to cook about 10 gallons of chili or chowder. Their night’s entry will cost in the region of $300 to $400 but the accolades will last long after the fest is over – restaurant owners and chefs can add their bragging rights to their menus noting ‘Best of’ placements. Judging is based on taste, color, texture, creativity and uniformity. There is also a peoples’ choice award.

Dear Sun Spots: A lady wanted Country magazines. I tried calling her but for some reason couldn’t get through. I have 13 of them she can have, if she is still interested. I also have 27 Highlight magazines, dating from 1973 to 1979 to give away. I hate to throw them out. They are in good condition. Thanks for a wonderful column. Anyone interested may call 225-3545 in the evenings. – No Name, No Town.

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