Chef challenge ramps up

FOOD

Olympic athletes are expected to pair up with local chefs on Sunday for the fifth annual Chef Survival Challenge Event at Madrona Farm.

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Since its inception in 2008, this awarenessbuilding fundraising event has raised thousands of dollars for farmland conservation, sustainable farming education and outreach.

But for many of the 300 to 500 people expected to attend, The Chef Survival Challenge is the highlight of the day. The light-hearted competition is a fun event in which some of Victoria's top chefs participate in what has been coined a "culinary arts performance." But the chefs will have help this year on their quest for culinary gold.

"We're going to pair the chefs with Olympic athletes," says Craig Sorochan, media spokesman for the event. "Hopefully the Olympians take the chefs to the next level."

Olympic rower David Calder and at least six other Olympians are expected to attend.

Miss Canada Galaxy 2011 will also make a special appearance.

Chefs will hurdle, race, crawl and kayak to "condiment island," ride a zip-line and climb a wall - all to create an extraordinary feast. Once they have completed the obstacle course, they have to forage over the 10 hectares of Madrona Farm to pick the vegetables they need to create their masterpiece meals using only camping gear.

There will be live entertainment, storytelling and farm crafts.

Tickets are $40 for adults and $100 for families (two adults, two children; $15 per extra child). The event runs noon to 5 p.m. Sunday at Madrona Farm, 4317 Blenkinsop Rd. Tickets are available online or at the gate.

For more information, go to chefsurvival challenge.com.

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