Hope Lutheran Church held its annual chili cook-off and silent auction on Jan. 26 with the auction raising $7,775.

This was the 10th year for the cookoff and the auction's third year.

The mood was festive as 21 of the church's families arrived carrying crock pots full of their best chili. There was chili of every color and persuasion using a variety of meats. No. 5 was made with elk.

Three celebrity judges from outside the church sampled and judged from all 21 pots to determine a winner in the categories of "most original," "spiciest," and "overall." Those who attended also voted for "fan favorite."

When sampling was done, Trish Gooderum won for most original; David Kapitanoff's took spiciest; and Harrison and Damon Holditch won in the overall category. Fan Favorite was a tie between Jacob Scheler and Norma Snelling.

All money raised from this year's event will go to help Hope expand their beach ministries.

"We are hoping to start another beach service at Inlet," said Kristie Scheler, the pastor's wife and director of Community Life. "This ministry touches thousands of people in our community and beyond."

Hope's chili cookoff is held every January.