Webster County chef Willie O'Nan will once again be chasing his dream as he heads to the World Food Championship (WFC) for the fourth time. This year the event has moved to Dallas, Texas.

Founded in 2012, the WFC is the largest competition in Food Sport, where grand champions of previous events convene for a chance at winning the ultimate food crown and a share of hundreds of thousands of dollars in prize money. The World Food Championships is also the springboard for many up and coming culinary stars and home cooks as they seek TV fame through many well-known food shows and acting opportunities.

Since that first year, 30 TV food stars have launched their careers at the event and more than $1.8 million in prize money has been awarded to competitors.

"I never thought I'd have the chance to do something like this," he said. "If you or anyone reading this ever gets the chance to do anything you never thought you would get the chance to do -- whether it be cooking, singing or playing a sport -- go for it! You will regret not doing it longer in life that you'll worry about taking the chance."

This year O'Nan will be competing in the WFC chili division, entering his Dr Pepper Bourbon Smoked Sausage Chili.

But competing at the WFC is a great opportunity, it also comes with a price. He's looking to raise $7,000 to help pay for travel, food and lodging.

With only a week to go until the event, he is still looking for local donors who might be interested in lending a helping hand.

He has a GoFundMe set up at gofundme.com/f/1qlbw93zc0.

Reach MATT HUGHES at 270-667-2068 or matt@journalenterprise.com.