Fall is certainly chili season in Montana, and if you love a great bowl of homemade chili, the place to be on Saturday (11/6) is High Plains Brewing in Laurel. It's a fundraiser for Laurel Volunteer Fire Department fireman Sean McCleary, who is fighting a brain tumor.

Photo by Michael Foth, Townsquare Media

McCleary has been with the LVFD for 13 years.

Sean is Captain of the Laurel Volunteer Fire Department, which has been serving residents and the surrounding 110 square miles for over 100 years. Besides fighting fires and responding to emergencies, the LVFD is the driving force of one of the biggest 4th of July fireworks show in the region. As a Laurel resident myself, these volunteer men and women have my highest respect. They truly care about our community and I don't know what we'd do without them.

Photo by Michael Foth, Townsquare Media

Brain tumor diagnosis.

In early September 2021 Captain McCleary, a father of three (one of his boys is also a fireman) was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a relatively rare, aggressive form of brain cancer. His surgeon was able to remove 98% of the tumor in mid-September and Sean will continue to receive extensive chemo and radiation to keep it in check. At the time of diagnosis, McCleary said,

I know what the odds are of survival, but there are also stories of survivors that have beat the odds. That is gonna be me. I am taking this by the horns and will do everything I can to come out on top. My family and I can't thank everyone enough for all the love and support we have received since this has happened.
You can help, by joining the chili cook-off fundraiser this Saturday in Laurel.
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Photos: Angelika Kagan/GettyStock/American Heritage Chocolate on Unsplash

Eat, drink and bid on cool stuff, Saturday from 1 - 8 pm.

Come to High Plains Brewing (601 E Main, Laurel) on Saturday, November 6th from 1 to 8 pm for the First Responder Chili Cook-Off and Silent Auction for Sean McCleary. The chili entrees from various area fire departments and EMS teams will be judged, starting at 1. The public is invited to the chili feed. The cost is just $5 per bowl. Cinnamon rolls and cornbread are $3 or you can make it a combo for $7.

High Plains Brewing offers a great selection of microbrews and non-alcoholic drinks are also available. Donations for the silent auction are being accepted until the event kicks off on Saturday. Contact Lisa Shifley at lisashifley@yahoo.com for pick-up options this week. You may drop off silent auction items at High Plains on Saturday morning.

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