MERCEDES Plans are well underway for the RGV Hispanic Chamber's "Hispanic Heritage Fiesta & Cook Off" scheduled for the weekend of Oct. 7 & 8 at the RGV Livestock Show Grounds in Mercedes.

The event will include a Sanctioned IBCA Cook Off with cash prizes over $10,000. Items to cook are Brisket, Port Spare ribs, Chicken, Pan de Campo, Beans and Chef's Choice. In addition, live entertainment will be available all day, vendor's selling their food, services & goods and a Kiddie Land area. In addition, SPI Bikefest will hold a Poker Run, Bike Skills Contest and Bike Show.

Stepping up to the plate to sponsor the "Kiddie Land Play Area" is Superior Health Plan. Superior Health Plan is a managed health care company that provides health care for many Texans. Superior works with the State of Texas Health and Human Services Commission to bring you STAR (Medicaid), children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), CHIP Perinatal Care, and STAR+PLUS in many cities and counties across Texas. Their sister company, Superior Health Plan Network, manages the STAR Health program on a statewide basis.

CHIP Perinatal Care is designed to provide prenatal and delivery services to unborn children of low-income pregnant women who do not qualify for Medicaid. CHIP (including CHIP RSA) is health care coverage available to families who earn too much money to qualify for Medicaid, but who can't afford to buy private insurance. STAR (Medicaid) is health care coverage for many low-income families. STAR Health (offered by Superior Health Plan Network) is health care coverage for children/young adults in foster care. And STAR+PLUS (Medicaid) is the health care coverage for qualified low-income people who are elderly or who have a disability. "We are very excited to have Superior Health Plan as a sponsor and member." stated Cynthia M. Sakulenzki, RGVHCC Pres/CEO.

Friday night will feature a VIP Reception/Dance from 7 to 10 p.m. with cooking teams getting two complimentary tickets. Tickets for the entertainment & beverages are $25. On Saturday, gates open at 8 a.m. "Bikers will be signing up at the gate for the Poker Run and the other events being hosted by the SPI Bikefest," said G.J. Reyna, SPI Bikefest Coordinator.

For more information on the Fiesta & Cook Off call the RGV Hispanic Chamber at 928-0060 or visit their offices at 3313 N. McColl Rd. in McAllen.