Chili, brews and tunes on tap beginning today |

Chili, brews and tunes on tap beginning today

Steve Benson

Not many things go together as well as chili, beer and music, and Snowmass Village will be offering both in abundance this weekend. The Chili Pepper & Brew Fest will debut at Snowmass Village Friday and run through the weekend, with live music from Leftover Salmon, David Lindley, and Pato Banton; chili cook-offs for both amateurs and International Chili Society veterans; a microbrew festival including 25 top microbreweries from around the nation; and vendor and food villages. The festival, which arrives early in the summer season, was partly designed to get a jump on the statewide competition. “We wanted to create a festival event that appeals to a wide variety of people – locals ready to let loose after a quiet offseason, families with kids just out of school, and people from other regional communities,” Susan Hamley, director of marketing for the town of Snowmass Village, said. “[It’s] a new reason to visit Snowmass in a traditionally slower time and celebrate the beginning of summer.” The International Chili Society will be on hand to host cook-offs in three categories: Chili Red, Chili Verde, and Salsa, with members from around the country battling it out Saturday for a trip to the Nationals in Las Vegas. Amateurs and locals will cook-off Sunday during the Locals Choice Competition. Crafts and food vendors will be stationed on the Snowmass mall throughout the festival. The brewers will also go head-to-head in a professionally judged competition on the mall at 2:30 p.m. Friday, with a grand tasting following on Saturday at 2 p.m. On Friday night, David Lindley and Leftover Salmon will perform, while on Saturday Pato Banton will take the stage. On Sunday afternoon, six popular local groups will be featured in a battle of the bands. Tickets are $29 per day (plus a $1 processing fee) or $49 for a weekend pass (plus a $1 processing fee). Sunday’s events and kids 12 and under are still free. Tickets can be purchased at Village Liquors in Snowmass, Zélé Music Café in Aspen, Sounds Easy in Carbondale, or Glenwood Music in Glenwood Springs. “This is the beginning of an exciting new Snowmass tradition,” said Hamley.Steve Benson’s e-mail address is

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