22nd Annual Downtown Ithaca Chili Cook-Off

Presented by: Maguire Hyundai Subaru Genesis

Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020
11:30am – 4:00pm

Featuring over 40 chilis prepared by 30+ restaurants from across the region as the restaurants compete for the titles of Best Meat/Overall Chili, Best Vegetarian/Vegan Chili, and People’s Choice Chili.

Festival guests will also have the opportunity to sample and buy complementary food items including baked good, sweets, and cornbread.

This annual foodie festival also features a farmers market with local wineries, breweries, cideries and farmers sampling their goods, plus lively entertainment like the annual ‘Stache and Beard competition and fun activities for all ages.

Last Year's Winners 

Join us this year and help us award the 2020 winners!

2020 Participating Restaurants & Chili Competitors

  • Kilpatrick’s Publick House
  • Mahogany Grill
  • Simeon’s
  • Cayuga Medical Center
  • MIA
  • The Piggery
  • AGAVA Restaurant
  • Texas Roadhouse Ithaca
  • Moosewood Restaurant
  • Ithaca Ale House
  • McCormick’s – Cornell Dining
  • Taverna Banfi at the Statler Hotel
  • Gorgers Sub Shop
  • The Hotel Ithaca – Ithaca Social Pub
  • Panera Bread
  • La Tourelle Bistro
  • Monks on the Commons
  • Coltivare Culinary Center
  • Red’s Place
  • The Strand Cafe at the Canopy by Hilton
  • Luna Inspired Street Food
  • Viva Taqueria and Cantina
  • Angelhearts Diner
  • Collegetown Bagels & Ithaca Bakery

…check back for updates!

  • Sweet Bottoms Cupcakes and Buns
  • Ithaca Ale House
  • Wagner Vineyards
  • Black Button Distilling
  • Six Mile Creek Vineyards
  • FLX Cider House
  • Idol Ridge Winery
  • Lucky Hare Brewing Co. 
  • Ithaca Beer Co. 

Chili ‘Stache and Beard Competition

Don’t miss the Chili ‘Stache and Beard Competition sponsored by The Ithaca Beard and Mustache Club!

Who has the most impressive mustache? The most incredible, impeccable beard? We’ll find out!

The Ithaca Beard and Mustache Club presents the Chili ‘Stache and Beard Competition.  Contests will occur Bank Alley on the Ithaca Commons at 3 pm, so come on out to participate or spectate! Right across from the beer tent!

Ticket Information


$10 for 10 tickets

  • Each ticket is valid for one sample of food, drink, or raffle entry.

$20 for 10 tastes,  $40 for 20 tastes.

  • Access to a separate, fast-moving sample line at chili and beverage booths.
  • Commemorative chili pepper necklace (while supplies last).

And as always, you can get your tickets on the day of the event at one of the official Chili Cook-Off ticket booths. (CASH ONLY!)

picture of tickets for chili cook-off

Purchase Locations:
  • Downtown Ithaca Alliance office

  • Downtown Visitors Center (CASH ONLY)

  • Online (20 ticket minimum, credit card)

Online Pre-Sale:

Online purchase minimum: 20 ticket bundle. 4% service fee on credit card purchases online.

Last day to purchase online: Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020

Ticket Pick-Up

Tickets purchased online can be picked up at the Downtown Ithaca Office, 171 E. State Street on or before Friday, February 7th or at Will Call in the Downtown Visitor Center on the day of the event (Feb. 8th.)

The last day to buy pre-sale tickets will be Thursday, February 6th, and the last day to pick up in the DIA office is Friday, February 7th. After that, all pre-purchased tickets will need to be picked up at the Visitors Center during the event.

CLICK HERE TO BUY TICKETSOnline purchase requires credit card.

Win Tickets to Chili Cook-Off 2020 Social Media Contest

Help us get to 9,500 Instagram followers by February 5th and receive VIP tickets to our 22nd Annual Chili Cook-Off happening Saturday, February 8th!

To Enter:

  • Follow us on Instagram at @DowntownIthaca
  • If we hit 9,500 followers, we’ll pick two lucky followers at random from the new followers for the prize! 🌶
  • Two winners will be announced on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (@DowntownIthaca) by the end of the day on Wednesday, February 5th, 2020.
  • Claim your prize at the Downtown Ithaca Office, 171 E. State St. (Center Ithaca) before 5 pm on Friday, February 7, 2020.

Directions & Parking

Attendees can park in the Green, Seneca, and Cayuga Street garages ($5 event rate) and walk to the Chili Cook-off. The garages are equipped with accessible parking and elevators. Street parking is also available.

For additional downtown parking information, click here.

Don’t want to drive? See TCAT bus routes and schedules here. 


Want to Participate?

Does your chili have what it takes? Want to showcase your best beer, wine, cider, spirit? Sign up below and put your chili where your mouth is!

Chili Fest Applications