Newspaper Story

The Three Winning Teams

Buena Park High Culinary Students Face Off in Chili Cook-Off
By Loreen Berlin
The Independent

For approximately five years, the Rotary Club of Buena Park has sponsored a chili cook off contest for students in Barbara Crampton’s Culinary Arts Class at Buena Park High School, which they recently completed.
The winning team out of the eight competing teams went on to a competition sponsored by the local Harley Davidson dealership. First Place Chili Cook Off winners Diana Gonzalez, 17, Cheryl Corpin, 17, and Vanessa Maier, 17, of the “Jamin’ Chili” team said, “We were very surprised to win because it was a competitive class.” They found the recipe on the Internet and then changed it by adding beans and taking out other items.
Second place team was “Tyler’s Texas Chili.” The young ladies said they chose the name because they liked the sound of it.
And third place chili winners were the “Million Dollar Chili “cooks. Team members were Giovanni Gonzalez, 16, and Novian Poole-Hines, 17. “We put all of our time into making sure the flavor was the best and we served it with a side of corn bread, bacon and cheese topping,” they said.
The Rotarians also sponsor the culinary student’s participation in the Annual Taste of Buena Park, coming up Wednesday, Dec. 10, at the Holiday Inn of Buena Park. For information on The Taste of Buena Park, call 714-521-0261 or visit
It was at the suggestion of District #5320 Youth Services Director Rotary International Dennis Salts to offer yet another idea for the students to have other venues to test their cooking skills, that they became involved with the Buena Park Chamber of Commerce’s tasting event and annual fundraiser.
Crampton is the Interact Club faculty advisory, which is a regular service club on campus and an arm of the Rotary Club. There are 33,000 Rotary clubs worldwide, with 1.3 million members, and Paul Harris began it in 1905.
The Buena Park Rotary Club was started Sept. 21, 1955, celebrating more than 50 years in 2005. The Rotary Club is, “Looking for a few good men and women who care about their community.”
Rotary is dedicated to helping Buena Park become a better place, helping people in need, and assisting individuals and projects worldwide.
District 5320 covers all of Orange County and part of South Los Angeles County that includes 50 Rotary Clubs, with 2,300 members, and the district is know for being a leader in the world and is one of the top contributors to Rotary International’s service projects. Additionally, each club works in their own community on an as-needed basis.
“The Interact Club at Buena Park High is number one in all of Orange County. They did the best against all other clubs that even have more resources,” said Salts.
The Interact Club meets once a week on campus during lunch. The take part in canned food drives and pet food drives to name a few items.
In addition to their cooking, the culinary students help at Silverado Days, the largest fundraiser for the Buena Park Noon Lions Club for charity, and will help with the Annual Shopping Spree for less fortune children on Saturday, Dec. 13, at 7 a.m. at Sears – corner of La Palma and Stanton avenues.
Volunteers are always needed and welcomed, said Chair Baron Night. For information, visit
The Rotary Club meets at noon each Wednesday at Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant, 8039 Beach Blvd., in Buena Park. For driving directions, call 714-220-1776.

Loreen Berlin can be reached at