The Coast News Group

Historical Society hosts annual Fandango

RANCHO SANTA FE — The Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society hosted the annual Fandango on Oct. 16 part of the Rancho Days celebration. A crowd of 200 showed up to enjoy the Mexican fare, margaritas and a bevy of chilis, thanks to the Chili Cook-off. Music was provided by the soft rock group Prairie Fire, and at times there was dancing in the streets.
“Guests stayed longer and the feedback I’ve gotten has all been very positive,” Historical Society President John Vreeberg said. Organizing the event were Sue and Gordy Bartow. “A big thanks to them because they always get things done,” Vreeberg said.
The annual Chili Cook-off was well-presented and patrons got to sample a variety of chilis from the six participating contestants. This year a panel of distinguished judges were secluded in a private area where they conducted a blind tasting, judging the chilis on their flavor, blend of spices, texture and aroma. The winner, as announced by organizer Chef Rex Havick, author of “Rock ‘n’ Roll Recipes,” was Donna Holcombe, who submitted her entry as Ho-Made Chili. Second prize went to Lynn Scully from High Noon Ranch. And the third-place winners were Melissa Williams and Machel Penn. As top prize winner, Holcombe won a gift certificate to Brett’s BBQ in Encinitas.
The Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society took the Fandango as an opportunity to showcase that their new 2010 Calendar that is available, featuring great pictures from their archives. The calendar is now available to purchase and proceeds will help pay for preservation of artifacts and photos that the Historical Society protects.