DHFD 22nd annual Chili Cook-Off to help burned children

chilicookoffweb
Photo courtesy of Robert Ankrapp
The 22nd annual Dearborn Heights Professional Fire Fighters Union Chili Cook-Off and Family Picnic will run from from noon to dusk Aug. 16 at Upper Parkland Park, on Ann Arbor Trail between Outer Drive and Evergreen Road. Proceeds from the charity event will benefit the Great Lakes Burn Camp, a summer camp for children who have experienced injury or disfigurement by severe burns.

HEIGHTS — The Dearborn Heights Professional Fire Fighters Union will host its 22nd annual annual Chili Cook-Off and Family Picnic from noon to dusk Aug. 16 at Upper Parkland Park.

In addition to the annual chili cooking competition,
the event features a host of family-oriented activities that include food and beverages, a family picnic area, face painting, a moonwalk (and other children’s games), a fire engine water shower, and more.

Entertainment will be provided by Benny and the Jets and MaTTo. Donated prizes (for all ages) totaling
an anticipated $5,000 or more will also be raffled off during the event.

The park is on Ann Arbor Trail between Outer Drive and Evergreen Road.

Proceeds from the charity event will benefit the Great Lakes Burn Camp, a summer camp for children who have experienced injury or disfigurement by severe burns.

Young burn victims (aged 7 to 17) are encouraged to build their self-esteem through the help of trained camp counselors, and by interacting directly with other young burn victims.

The camp gives children total access to the “good life” without the constraints of feeling different or not fitting in because of their injuries/disfiguration.

The week-long camp includes camping, kayaking, horseback riding, water-skiing, go-carts and more.

Proceeds from last year’s chili cookoff allowed
the Dearborn Heights Firefighters, IAFF Local 1355 to send at least 20 children to the camp at a cost of about
$500 per child.

Public donations to support the event are welcome.

“Public donations play a huge role in the success of this event, and in our ability to get as many deserving
kids as possible to this camp,” said DHFD Capt. Bill Herman, one of the event’s key organizers.

“This is something we desperately need in order to continue with the success we’ve achieved in past years.

Without the public’s help, we would only be able to sponsor three or four kids, as opposed to our goal of sending as many as we do.”

All donated items — including electronic items, toys, tools, retail items, gift certificates and non-perishable goods — are placed on display during the event for viewing by the guests. The items are then raffled to those who purchase tickets for the prize drawing.

Subsequently, the more attractive the gift, the more raffle tickets are placed in that gift’s “ticket canister” for the drawing.

Cash donations are also welcome, which are applied directly toward the children’s camp fees.

Herman stressed that 100 percent of the proceeds from this event are used to offset the camp fees – camp staff members, its board of directors, firefighters and committee members accept no compensation for their work.

Checks should be made payable to the DHPFFU Charity Fund, and mailed to: DHPFFU Charity Fund, 1999 N. Beech Daly, Dearborn Heights, MI, 48127, Attn: Lt. Philip Hall. Prize donation pickup can be arranged by calling 313-791-3676 or 313-791-9880.

“We hope folks will come out on Aug. 16 for a great event,” Herman said, “and find it in their hearts to give whatever they can to help these deserving
kids.”