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St. Luke UCC in Beecher Has a Full House for Annual Chili Supper

Photo Caption: Like all the rest of the many volunteers who pitch in to make St. Luke’s Chili Supper a success, the kitchen crew was pretty tired by the time they prepared the dinner, served it to more than 500 guests and cleaned up. Led by Crete Fire Chief Mike Waterman (center, back row) the KP Patrol included: Terry, Ann, Bud, Braeden, Peter, and CE. Chief Waterman will be in the kitchen again on Sunday, March 25, for the Crete FD’s annual Pancake Breakfast from 7 a.m. to noon. Rumor has it that a special bunny will be stopping by, too.

—photo by Karen Haave


Anyone who knows us knows about our legendary sweet tooth, so a visit to the Bake Sale table at St. Luke’s was a must. Beverly Reed, Rita Dreesen and Jeanette Studenroth were in charge of the sweet treats.–photo by Karen Haave

For those who choose to dine in at the St. Luke Chili Supper, long time ticket takers Pearl Dapkus and :Lenard Brands are there to greet you with a happy smile.–photo by Karen Haave

Enthusiastic guests from Peotone, Crete and even Indiana enjoy St. Luke’s annual Chili Supper. Tina Butler, a Peotone resident, and her mom, Bobbie Kusek, were among them this year.–photo by Karen Haave

St. Luke UCC Beecher Pastor Tom Ewing, Cecilia Bell and her husband Dale were on hand to greet guests for the annual Chili Supper on March 10–photo by Karen Haave

Organizers of the popular Chili Supper at St. Luke United Church of Christ in Beecher aren’t exactly sure when the event first took place.

But they do know it dates back to the late 1970s and has drawn as many as 600 happy diners.

The March 10 event was no exception, with a standing-room-only crowd waiting to be seated or pick up their delicious dinners. Guests identified themselves as Peotone residents, Crete families and “Indiana lovers of great chili.”

According to Chili Supper Chairman Dale Bell, the event initially was a Dart Team fundraiser.

“When the Dart Team dissolved, the event became a church-sponsored function,” he said.

“Currently the Chili Supper event is scheduled annually for the second Saturday in March. We serve approximately 500 people, which includes both dine-in and carry-out service. The chili makers prepare both mild and hot chili, and also chili mac is offered.  

“A must to go along with the chili is homemade beer bread. Also the desserts are homemade by the church members.

“In addition to the Chili Supper, there is a bake sale with homemade items and raffle baskets. The baskets, along with gift certificates, are provided by church members and local area businesses.

“The entire congregation participates, both young and old, to make it a very successful event.”

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