|Gorgeous harvest of spicy peppers|
Mike's Maze's Chilifest this year will be held on Saturday and Sunday, September 16th & 17th, 2016. Click for event details.Presented by The Kitchen Garden "The Valley's Hottest Vegetable Farm" and Mike's Maze at Warner Farm, this two-day festival is a tribute to the mighty capsicum in all of its fiery glory and a celebration of fall in Western Massachusetts. This family-friendly festival is rife with live music, cooking demonstrations, food, games and a corn maze!
|Beautiful giant vat of chili for tasting|
Hungry festival goers indulged in a blind taste test and were encouraged to vote for their favorite medley via toothpick ballot. Seeing how we are, we tried each of the impressive offerings which ranged from beef to turkey to veggie and enjoyed them all. The winner received a cast iron chili pot filled with The Kitchen Garden's home grown Sriracha sauce. Sunday was the Hot Sauce Competition, which we are certain was equally titillating. Competition is open to the public - will you take home the prize in 2016?
|Samples of chili for tasting and judging|
And in the unlikely event that we weren't inspired by any of the dishes served at the festival, The Kitchen Garden set up a gorgeous farm stand loaded with colorful peppers (hot and sweet), tomatillos, garlic, onions, tomatoes and their own Sriracha sauce. They'd even fire-roast your peppers for you.
|Rocketing potatoes is great fall fun!|
|Alice in Sunderland is the maze theme|
Ample free parking is in a field right next to the festival so expect no more than a leisurely one- to two-minute walk; no shuttles no worries.
Tickets are available in advance or at the door. Advance tickets are sold at a discount and can be bought online. The ticket line at the door was pretty long when we got to the festival, but it moved quickly.
Wear comfortable shoes - you will be parking in a mowed field and the festival is set up in an adjacent field. The ground is relatively level, but it's still a field.
Comfort stations are provided in the form of porta-potties which were located peripherally to the festival. We didn't see any lines, so there appear to have an adequate number of them.
Cover is provided under the large food tent where the demonstrations and chili tasting are held. There are lots of chairs so you can sit and enjoy your chili and listen to the chefs. There are also picnic tables at the Warner Farm snack shed next to the maze.