It was taco soup to the finish line for First Security Bank.
For the third consecutive year, the financial institution's taco-flavored soup took top honors at Habitat for Humanity of Saline County's "Souper Bowl" cookoff.
Jerry Ponder and Kaycee Wright of First Security operated the bank's booth where they collected the biggest financial return for the event.
"They raised over $300 at that booth," said Amy Bennett, associate director of the chapter.
The booth winner was determined based on the total amount of money collected in each team’s tip jar.
Twenty teams competed in the event that benefits the agency's Apostles Building in September 2013, Bennett explained. In that project, several churches join to build one of the homes for a Habitat family.
Referencing Habitat's Christian-based ministry, the Saline County affiliate attempts to have at least 12 churches participating in that project, Bennett noted.
Overall, the cookoff brought in $4,200 for that build, she said.
"We were really pleased with the turnout for the cookoff," she added. "We had great support from the community.
"We're thankful for all our participating teams and that the event continues to grow every year," she said. "We're looking forward to even more participation next year."
The Souper Bowl is a forerunner each year to the annual Super Bowl.
The setting was the Christian Life Center of First United Methodist Church in Downtown Benton,
Attendees were given unlimited bowls of soup or chili, as well as desserts, while browsing themed gift baskets in the silent auction.
Proceeds from the event, which is in its third year, helps Habitat for Humanity move one step closer to ending sub-standard housing in Saline County, Bennett noted.
The Christian Life Center was filled nearly to capacity for much of the time for the Friday event.
Habitat for Humanity of Saline County is an ecumenical Christian ministry that works with the local community to build simple, decent, affordable homes for hardworking, deserving families. Since 1999, the organization has partnered with churches, businesses, organizations and individuals to build and provide homes for more than 53 area families.
Karma Herzfeld is executive director of the agency.
For more information about Habitat or to donate or volunteer, go to www.habitatsalinecountyar.org .