With fall comes green chile and the Cha Cha

7
Photo courtesy Jacque Aragon Celebrating its 10th year, the Mountain Chile Cha Cha will feature not only green chile and drinks, but also races for several different ability levels, including a kids’ fun race, a 5k, 10k and half marathon.
Photo courtesy Jacque Aragon
Celebrating its 10th year, the Mountain Chile Cha Cha will feature not only green chile and drinks, but also races for several different ability levels, including a kids’ fun race, a 5k, 10k and half marathon.

By Jacque Aragon
Special to The PREVIEW

Each year, the fall season arrives with shorter days, cooler nights and bushels of fresh roasted green chiles.

In Pagosa Springs, there is an annual green chile cook-off where chefs of all abilities and backgrounds compete for cash, trophies and bragging rights. This event, the Patty Aragon Green Chile Classic (PAGCC), was created to celebrate the green chile harvest and pay homage to a local green chile enthusiast who sated Pagosans’ green chile palettes for years with her tasty homemade recipe.

Patty Aragon, along with her husband, Ross Aragon, owned and operated Al’s West and East in the 1970s until 1992. Al’s was famous for its green chile, which was served straight up or atop burgers, fries and almost everything.

“My mother made the best green chile, hands down,” explained Jacque Aragon, who has organized the cook-off for the last seven years. “I’m proud to carry on the family tradition and love seeing other people get excited about making and eating green chile.”

The PAGCC is part of the Mountain Chile Cha Cha, which is hosted by GECKO (Giving Every Child Knowledge of the Outdoors). The Cha Cha is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and will take place in Town Park, rain or shine, on Oct. 1.

The festival includes a kids’ fun race, a 5k, 10k and half marathon for adults to compete in for prizes. Other activities include a Mexican beer garden, margarita contest, all-day kids corner, green chile roasted on site and a Latin music concert.

We hope to see you at the Cha Cha.