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Iowa Red Cross Competes in 2nd Annual Firehouse Chili Cook-off

cookoff participants
The Red Cross in Iowa is a proud supporter of firefighters across the state.

In partnership with the Fire Service Associations of Iowa, the second annual firehouse chili cook-off took placeThursday, March 21, in the main rotunda at the Capitol. The event was part Firefighter Day on the Hill. The American Red Cross serving Greater Iowa was invited to participate by State Fire Marshal, Ray Reynolds.

35 teams faced off in the chili cook-off. Judging took place for one hour before one department won the coveted W. Stuart Crine award for the best public safety chili in Iowa.

The trophy went to the Department of Public Safety: Narcotics Enforcement. Second and third places went to the State Fire Marshal's Office and the Cedar Rapids Fire Department.

A piece of World Trade Center steel was on display in the center of the rotunda with honor guards from the Fire Service and the Iowa State Patrol watching over the memorial piece.

The Red Cross in Iowa is a proud supporter of firefighters across the state. The biggest disaster threat to families across our nation every day isn’t a flood or tornado; it’s fire. Last year, the Red Cross in Iowa responded to more than 500 fires.

"Fires can strike suddenly and spread quickly,” said Leslie Schaffer, Regional Chief Executive Officer. “It’s important to take simple steps now, such as installing a smoke alarm inside bedrooms, outside sleeping areas and on every level of their homes. Create a plan of escape in case you and your family need to leave at a moment’s notice. During a fire, every second counts and being prepared can greatly reduce the affects of these devastating disasters.”