"That ghost chili," one sweaty-faced believer warned during Saturday's fifth annual Charity Chili Cookoff, "will hurt you. Tomorrow."

He wasn't overstating anything, either. While a crowd gathered to sample the entries in this year's competition at Owens Cycle on North First Street, the warm, spicy smells of fresh, homemade chili steamed up the shop on a drizzly day. And the pained expressions on some of the faces confirmed that a few of the dishes had probably pegged the heat scale.

As the suffering guzzled bottled water, the judges deliberated. When the heat was finally turned down, here's who was left standing:

  • People's Choice / Best Overall -- Ogly Ray Matthews
  • Meatiest -- Ogly Ray Matthews (first), Van Weaver (second), Anonymous (third)
  • Spiciest -- Ruby Cleverly (first), Ashton Almandinger (second), Eric Greeno (third)

Besides the best chili in town and lots of friendly hugs and handshakes, the event featured a silent auction and a quilt raffle to benefit the Yakima Veterans Food Bank and child services at Toppenish DSHS.