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37th Annual JSC FOD
Chili Powered Home Schedule Judging Games Registration Showmanship
Chili cook off



Chili Cook-off

Chili Cook-off

Chili Cook-off

Chili Cook-off


"Let the Chili Games Begin" Guidelines
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THE FOUR GAMES

ALL GAME PARTICIPATION CONTRIBUTE TO THE SHOWMANSHIP AWARD

GAMES WILL BE SCHEDULED TO BE NON-INTERFERING WITH TEAM
EVENTS (SKITS) AND CHILI TASTING EVENTS

GAMES:RULES AND SCHEDULE (Printable Word version)

FIRST, SECOND AND THIRD PLACE RIBBONS WILL BE AWARDED FOR EACH GAME.
TEAM MEMBERS MUST BE AT LEAST 18 YEARS OF AGE.
ONE TEAM PER EVENT PER CHILI TEAM ENTRY.

Chili Pepper

GRAPEFRUIT PASS:

OBJECT: PASS THE GRAPEFRUIT THE FASTEST
Ten persons will comprise a team: 5 men and 5 women. Team will line up standing in a row and each team's grapefruit will be placed under the chin of the first team member. At the start, the grapefruit will be passed from chin to chin until it reaches the end of the line. No hands are allowed. If the grapefruit falls, team must start over. Fastest team time is the winner.

Chili Pepper

PYRAMID BUILD:

OBJECT: BUILD A HUMAN PYRAMID THE FASTEST
Ten participants will be needed per team, including at least 3 women, to build a 10- person pyramid in a 4-person base, 3-person second level, 2-person third level, and 1-person on the fourth (top) level. At the start of the race, the 10 team members must be standing shoulder to shoulder. Once started, the team must form a pyramid on their hands and knees and hold a stable pyramid for 1 second, at which time the team judge will raise a flag. The fastest team judged by the games chairman will be declared the winner. Teams collapsing must continue to try to build the pyramid or be disqualified. No support devices or climbing aids are permitted.

Chili Pepper

SPOON DROP:

OBJECT: DROP SPOON THROUGH THE PARTICIPANTS' CLOTHING UNTIL IT EMERGES AT FEET
Four participants, including at least 2 women, will be supplied a 25 foot string with a spoon attached to both ends. The object of the game is to drop the spoon down inside the participants' clothing, starting at the neck and drop spoon through until it emerges at feet (or knee if shorts are worn). Clothes cannot be touched except by wearer. To signal "finish", the persons at the ends of the lines raise the spoon over their head. Fastest team time is declared the winner. Note: Loose-fitting clothes/shorts are a definite advantage.

Chili Pepper

SPACE TRIVIA GUIDELINES:
This fast-pace game of mental recall, imagination, and stamina is based on the popular old "GE College Bowl" television show. It has been a very popular feature of past chili cookoffs.

Up to four teams (of up to four players each) compete using a buzzer/light board system provided by contractor employees. The goal is to earn points by being the first to correctly answer a short question asked by the "Triviameister", and to have the most total points at the end of the round.

A round consists of 20 questions and usually takes about 15 minutes to complete. These question sets are prepared before the game and inserted into unmarked envelopes, and one is selected at random prior to each round.

Questions are read one at a time by the triviameister.

Any audible verbal expression of the answer from the surrounding audience is grounds for throwing out that question and replacing it with one from a special pool.

Teams may consult among themselves at any time, both before pressing the buttons and afterwards. Players are urged to press their buttons as soon as they believe they will be able to produce the answer after several more seconds. Don't wait until you are sure you know the answer, it will be too late.

The triviameister will then call upon the team whose board is lit and give them ten seconds to begin their answer, and ten seconds more to finish it. If the answer is correct he will announce the award of the points to the specific team. The points are written down on an easel by a scorekeeper.

If the answer is not correct, the question becomes available for another team to attempt to answer it. In two-team games (finals), the other single team gets a shot. When there are three or more teams, it is not possible for the buzzer-board logic to determine 2nd/3rd priority among competing teams, so the question will be thrown out if there is such a dispute. If only one other team wishes to attempt an answer, they will be allowed to do so.

Players may buzz at any time after the triviameister begins to read the question. There is no requirement to wait until the end. Pre-emptive answering can be a risky but often worthwhile strategy. However, the penalty for an interrupted question is 5 points for a wrong answer, with the question read over again from the beginning for the other team(s).

Some of the harder questions may include a second part, explicitly called the "hint", which is read after a brief pause if no answer is attempted. There is NO penalty for interrupting the "hint". There is no penalty for a wrong answer after the question is completed.

Remember: "Smart guessing is just as good as knowing". If the answer is not immediately obvious to you, think about the question again and see if there aren't hints provided which narrow down the range of possible answers. These hints are often deliberately designed into the questions and if you listen correctly they are not meant to trick you. Creative SWAGs have often earned big points for bold guessers.

However, you MUST listen carefully to the literal meaning of the questions and not make external assumptions. Some of the questions are carefully worded intentionally so that careless misinterpretations are possible.

Questions range over all aspects of space activities, with every round including a wide variety of subjects. The early questions are rated as the "easiest" and are worth ten points. By mid-game, the questions are worth 15 points. The final questions, considered to be the
hardest, are 20 points each. This can allow slow-starting teams to "come up to speed" and it also provides a highly unstable end-game situation where big early leads can quickly evaporate. Special tie-breaking questions are also prepared.

The categories among which the twenty questions are divided roughly are as follows:
STS 4
NASA general 2
Unmanned space & science 3
Merc-Gem-Ap-Skylab 3
Space engineering 2
Russia, other nations 4
Miscellaneous 2

A large portion of these questions are new every time, but many others are re-worded re- treads from earlier games in years past. And some of the same topics may be revisited from different directions to create a number of similar questions, so it pays to have at least one team member monitoring ALL other rounds as well as playing in your own. Note that some of the historical questions deal with specific experiences here at JSC, many of which have never been written down.

The answers have all been carefully checked by the organizers, and the decision of the collective triviameisterhood is final. In rare and infrequent disputes, however, additional questions can be selected from a special pool.

New questions are always needed from all players and onlookers, who can submit them in writing for consideration in follow-on competitions.

The winner of each round advances to the next round. Depending on the number of teams, the second place teams in the early rounds may also be given the opportunity to return for another shot. The end game is a one-on-one final round between the two top teams.

Studying for these games is not too helpful, beyond a basic familiarity with U.S. human space mission events, general NASA knowledge (read the Space News Roundup) and current space events familiarity.

Practicing for these games MAY INDEED be helpful, in the sense that thinking quickly under pressure and answering accurately before total certainty can be a learned mental fear (in fact, it's typical of a good flight controller). Questions can be thrown at the team, who practice reacting by slapping a table, then waiting to be called upon. Memory-enhancing and mind-altering chemicals are NOT recommended but are difficult to detect considering the kinds of competitors who usually show up for this sport.

The up-to-four-person team can consist of chili team members and their families. A wide variety of experience and background can help cover the wide variety of questions.

Past annual themes include:
1992 - Special Spellings
1993 - Space Center Houston
1994 - Russian program
1995 - Interplanetary
1996 - "Apollo 13"
1997 - International Space Station
1998 - John Glenn

In summary, this game has provided some extremely exciting competitions in the past, and everyone has enjoyed it. The rules have been evolving based on the experience of the players and are open to suggestions. We urge all interested groups to field their quiz team and enter the intellectual arena of the "Space Trivia Competition"

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Curator:  Marcus D. Friske | Responsible NASA Official: Elmer Johnson | Administrator
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Updated: February 05, 2019