As summer winds down in Pueblo, one of the last festivals left to celebrate before fall rears its chilly head is the Chile and Frijoles Festival, presented by Loaf ‘N Jug and sponsored by the Pueblo Chamber of Commerce.
The festival is held every year in the Union Avenue Historic District where the street is shut down, and vendors sell fair-style food, apparel, accessories, housewares, toys, arts and crafts and much more. Restaurants and bars in the downtown area have drink discounts and specials on food, there are rides for children and most important of all: Pueblo chilies.
Thousands of people come from all over the state and the country each year to purchase bushels of fresh chilies; even the smell is amazing as you approach the festival. You can actually watch your chilies being roasted outside in huge tin barrels. There are various exciting food competitions like the chili cook-off, the battle of the chilies, and even a jalapeño eating contest.
This year the Pueblo Chile and Frijoles Festival is open Sept. 19-21, and there are plenty of fun-filled activities to pack into the whole weekend. Friday, the festival kicks off with live entertainment, a farmer’s market and chili roasting. Saturday features more live entertainment, the Chili and Salsa Showdown (commercial division) and more chili roasting.
Sunday, the festival ends with the Hot to Trot 5k Run in the morning, followed by the farmer’s market, the jalapeño eating contest, the Chili and Salsa Showdown Food competition results and of course, chili roasting. There are also art shows and live bands performing over the span of the festival, and you can even take a stroll down the river walk which isn’t far away.
So get out and enjoy the Pueblo Chile and Frijoles Festival next month where you can sample this year’s harvest of the Marisol, which according to the festival’s website, is Pueblo’s most popular variety of pepper, selling about $50,000 worth last year alone.
For information on admission, hours and activities at the festival visit the website at www.pueblochilefestivalinfo.com