Calhoun: Wake-Up Call

Pueblo Chiles Get Their Day at the Colorado State Fair

Forget Hatch chiles. It's time to celebrate the Pueblo chile — and this is the weekend to do it, since September 5 is Pueblo Chile Day, a new event at the Colorado State Fair. “The Pueblo Chile has been a centerpiece of popular fair foods at the Colorado State Fair, making us truly unique from other fairs across the country. This year, we are participating in a full-day celebration that will honor the Pueblo Chile and those who grow the popular pepper,” said Colorado State Fair General Manager Chris Wiseman in announcing the honor.

Pueblo Chile Day activities include a chile LEGO sculpture, chile roasting and the official Pueblo Chile Day Proclamation (below). And, of course, throughout the run of the fair — it closes Monday, September 7 — you can enjoy a variety of fair foods highlighting the Pueblo chile, including Chiles en Fuego (voted Grand Champion during the 2014 Colorado State Fair Food Tasting Competition) outside of the Events Center; Giodone’s deep-fried green chilies and green-chile sloppers, french fries and nachos outside the Weatherport; pizza and green chile at Manhattan's next to the Colorado Building; chiles rellenos at Beatty’s; green chile and Pueblo Chile wrap at the Primetime Horse Arena; and green chile at Joey D’s at the Coca-Cola stage.

What? No Pueblo chile on a stick? 

WHEREAS, grown with Colorado sunshine and Rocky Mountain water, the Pueblo Chile has been on family tables and infused into local cuisines for generations; and

WHEREAS, Pueblo Chiles, which once could only be purchased locally, are now being grown, processed, and distributed on a larger scale so that more communities can enjoy their meaty texture and unique flavor; and

WHEREAS, the expansion of the Pueblo Chile brand will provide a boost to Pueblo’s economy, by providing expanded employment opportunities for Pueblo Chile farmers, farmworkers, processors, shippers, and retailers; and

WHEREAS, Coloradans recognize the importance of the Pueblo Chile in advancing the state’s economy and health; and

WHEREAS, from this day forward, the Saturday before the Colorado State Fair’s Fiesta Day will be celebrated in the City and County of Pueblo as Pueblo Chile Day;

Therefore, I John W. Hickenlooper, Governor of the entire State of Colorado, do hereby proclaim, forever after, September 5, 2015, as PUEBLO CHILE DAY
By the way, Pueblo hosts an annual Chile & Frijoles Festival celebrating this hot, hot product; this year's fest runs September 25 through September 27. Find out more at And learn everything you need to know about the fair at
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Patricia Calhoun co-founded Westword in 1977; she’s been the editor ever since. She’s a regular on the weekly CPT12 roundtable Colorado Inside Out, played a real journalist in John Sayles’s Silver City, once interviewed President Bill Clinton while wearing flip-flops, and has been honored with numerous national awards for her columns and feature-writing.
Contact: Patricia Calhoun