CHATHAM, NJ - The Super Bowl is a national event, but Chatham resident John Carini is providing a pre-Super Bowl warmup activity - the "Chili Bowl" - a contest that will raise funds for the Tri-County Scholarship Fund.

Carini, a member of the Tri-County board, and Kristin Shannon, both of Chatham computer software company iEnterprises, are organizing the chili contest that will be voted on by attendees of the event set for the Friday before Super Sunday, 7 p.m. at Chatham Fish & Game.

In addition to the contest that will award the chili that is "Best Tasting", "Most Original" and "Best Presentation", there will be a silent auction for other prizes.

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"What this charity does is help underprivileged kids get excellent, what they call a value-based education," Carini said. "We have three kids who directly benefit from the fundraiser who are from Orange, New Jersey. They'll go to school here in Chatham.

"It really makes a huge difference by getting them into these schools at a young age. The scholarships cover K-12. There is so much money for college, there are all sorts of endowments and things, but there is a gap for the younger kids that this helps."

Chatham and surrounding area residents are invited to enter the "Chili Bowl" contest. So far, the contestants include Maureen Carini, Brian & Ellen Whiteman, Matthew James, Mike and Julie Moran, Rob Ripp, Dina Marchese, Jessica Owens, Mark and MaryAnn Grilli, ShopRite and Barbara Hemmerling.

"The chili contest is the food, there will be tons of chili," Carini said. "It's a BYOB event.

"ShopRite has been super generous. They're putting together a fixings bar, providing a sheet cake, prizes for the winners and a catering representative."

According to Carini, the Tri-County Scholarship Fund has 500 scholarships out there now. A former Tri-County Scholarship recipient will be at the "Chili Bowl" to talk about the benefits the fund provides.

Local Chatham donors to the "Chili Bowl" are ShopRite, Mitsuba, Pour HoMMe, Charlie Brown's, John Buckman and Ready to Paint. Madison donors include Urban Fire, Sharkey's Kid Cuts, Madison Mud, The Bar Method-Madison and the Madison YMCA.

Other donors include The Able Baker of Maplewood, the Meat House of Summit, Boxcar of Short Hills and MPAC of Morristown.

Silent auction gifts have also been provided by the NY Giants, Liberty Science Center, Hanover Lanes, Partea2, Panera, NY Red Bulls, Lifetime, Smathers & Branson, the Messy Artist and Screamin' Parties.

For entries or information on the "Chili Bowl" CLICK HERE