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Local chef Kelly Wangard competes on Cutthroat Kitchen 

Confirmation: Cutthroat Kitchen television show is set to air on the Food Network on Sunday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m.

Executive chef showcases her talents on reality TV

Kelly Wangard, the executive chef at Summerwood Winery and Inn, will soon add reality television contestant to her list of accomplishments as part of the Food Network show, Cutthroat Kitchen. The episode she appears on is set to air on Sunday, Oct. 26, though the scheduling of the air date could be changed.

Kelly Wangard

Chef Kelly Wangard

The Cutthroat Kitchen chef competition pits four chefs against each other, but they also get $25,000 — in fake money — that they can spend to help themselves or sabotage their competitors.

“[It’s] kind of crazy stuff,” Wangard said about the sabotaging that can be done, noting that a couple of options are cooking in a telephone booth or having all of your utensils taken away. “It really comes down to how creative you can get.”

Wangard said she applied to be a contestant on the show after she noticed that there was a search going on for a female executive director. Later, one of the show’s producers started having conversations with her via Facebook. When all was said and done, Wangard didn’t even have to audition for the show.

“I just had this great opportunity,” Wangard said about why she applied for the show. “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It was challenging.”

A few weeks after Wangard found out that she’d be on the show, she traveled to Burbank May 8 to 10 for filming. Just two weeks prior, she had ran in the Boston Marathon — just one of the many events that keeps this busy professional on the go. Two days after filming with Cutthroat Kitchen, she flew to Japan to meet with the owners of Summerwood.

More about Kelly Wangard

Wangard’s journey to being the executive chef at Summerwood Winery and Inn began at an early age. After moving to Paso Robles with her family at the age of 11, Wangard was immersed in the agricultural community, growing up among bountiful field and fresh harvests. She learned how to grow her own herbs and vegetables from her mother in addition to raising her own lambs and caring for horses. After graduation from high school, Wangard worked at Cahoots Catering in Paso Robles before attending the California Culinary Academy.

Wangard has worked in different capacities in kitchens and as a chef around the country as well as in the Caribbean. She met her husband, Gregg, when worked the line together at Turtle Bay Restaurant on St. John in the Virgin Islands. They married in 2002 and moved to Gregg’s home state of Wisconsin. In 2004, they moved to the Los Angeles area where Wangard worked at the newly-renovated Lot 1224 Restaurant at Loews in Beverly Hills, and Gregg worked in Santa Monica. Gregg is the currently corporate chef for Boutique Hotel Collection and executive chef of Gardens of Avila at Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort. The Wangards are parents to a kindergartner and third-grader.