By Rebecca Croomes
It was easy to get caught up in the crowd Saturday as everyone brought out bowls and spoons to sample Limestone County’s best chili.
For the past 25 years, Hospice of Limestone County has set up shop inside the gymnasium at Athens High School to raise money through the Chili Challenge cook-off.
People thronged around the silent auction tables, some eyeing the electric guitar signed by Athens’ own Alabama Shakes. Organizers guarding the prize figured the instrument would fetch more than $2,000, but the winner came in just shy at $1,350.
Shakes lead singer Brittany Howard’s grandmother is involved with the end-of-life care organization and could be seen working the bake sale table.
Final cash figures are still being tabulated, but city of Athens spokeswoman Holly Hollman announced that at least $8,000 was raised in ticket sales. The Will Haney Foundation, represented by the sister and parents of the late Will Haney, presented a check for $3,000 to Hospice.