Chi O, ATO race to benefit philanthropies with chili, team hospital bed race

Jamison Lawrence holds a Common Grounds drink with a sleeve promoting Chi O Chili Cook-off and ATO Bed Races, both held to support philanthropies. Photo Courtesy of Baylor Chi Omega

By Bridget Sjoberg | News Editor

As part of an annual partnership to benefit both groups’ philanthropies, Chi Omega and Alpha Tau Omega will be hosting Chi O Chili Cook Off and ATO Bed Races, a night full of contests and community.

It will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. tonight on Fountain Mall, and all proceeds benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation and CoHope, the philanthropies of Chi Omega and ATO, respectively. The main activities of the night will be a chili cook-off where participating groups submit their contribution to a panel of Baylor faculty and staff, and bed races, where students can register in teams of five to race each other on hospital beds—often in costumes— and complete a blow-up obstacle course.

Houston junior McKenna Koy, Chi Omega’s director of community service, said that the cook-off and races will be an opportunity for both groups to support their philanthropies while also participating in a fun fall event.

“All of the funds raised will be distributed equally to these philanthropies, and we are so excited to be able to support them and benefit as many children as possible,” Koy said. “It is such a blessing to support such wonderful organizations in such a fun way. Chili Cook-Off and Bed Races is such a unique event—it is my favorite night of the year. It has very fun fall vibes and is a blast every year.”

Castle Pines, Co., junior Sarah Asinof said that the event pique the interest of attendees due to its unique activities and is an event that originally inspired her to want to join Chi Omega.

“Before I even joined Chi Omega, I heard about Chili Cook-Off and Bed Races, and the entire thing definitely piqued my interest because you don’t hear of people racing on hospital beds and eating chili at the same time all that often,” Asinof said. “I think it’s such a unique event that is so different than a typical fundraiser for that reason—it catches people’s attention. It honestly was a huge deciding factor in my choice to join because I liked how Chi O was actively doing things on campus for a good cause like Make-A-Wish.”

Make-A-Wish benefits children suffering from critical illnesses by offering hopeful experiences during their time of need, and CoHope benefits underserved youth through community and support in sports, faith, education and other ways. Koy said the event’s main goal is to benefit both philanthropies and that the event will have some changes from last year.

“We are ecstatic to be able to partner with both incredible philanthropies, and a main goal is to reach more people and benefit Make-A-Wish and CoHope to the best of our abilities,” Koy said. “The event will have a different layout than in years past, and another major way it’s different is that it benefits both organizations’ philanthropies.”

Koy said that anyone is welcome to attend the event, but groups hoping to register in the contests need to sign up by noon Friday. She also said tshirts for the event are being sold in various on-campus locations, and that they will be sold at the event as well.

“This is an all-campus event and we want anyone and everyone to participate,” Koy said. “Anyone can come to the event for free—however, it is $5 for unlimited catered chili and $25 per team for a bed race or chili cook-off team. There will [also be] Tiff’s Treats for first-comers, hot chocolate, water, Topo Chico, Dr Pepper and Coca-Cola. There will be face painting and music playing, and Wish families will be present too.”

Asinof said she hopes students come out to support, as the event can help raise donations that benefit others on both a regional and national scale.

“The more good we can do, the better. Both CoHope and Make-A-Wish are doing great things for people in Waco, in Texas and all over the country,” Asinof said. “To be able to take part in a small piece in changing someone’s life or making it a little easier during hard times makes being a part of Chi O even sweeter. I’m grateful we have the privilege of doing this every year, and I hope people can come and have fun, but more importantly notice the importance of service and philanthropy.”

To sign up for Chili Cook-Off or Bed Races, visit