"The noblest of all dogs is the hot-dog; it feeds the hand that bites it." … Lawrence J. Peter
What would NY be without it’s famous Hot Dogs. Since July has been designated the “Hot Dog Month” what better way to celebrate this tasty little sausage but with the famous “Coney Island Hot Dog Eating Contest.” For those of you who are not familiar with this yearly fest, every July, Nathan’s of Coney Island, NY sponsors a hot dog eating contest. If you have never scene this event it is surely something missed. For almost 7 years in a row, a slight looking man from Japan, Takeru Kobayashi has won the contest by devouring close to 60 hot dogs in 10 minutes. The past 3 years, a new comer to the contest has been Joey (also quite thin), has won the coveted “Mustard Belt”! (See the pictures above)! This year as thousands of people and fans crowded into Coney Island to watch this event, the contest almost ended in a tie, with both Joey and Takeru eating 60+ hot dogs each. The judges final decision went again this year to Joey Chestnut, who managed to eat 68 hotdogs in 10 minutes.
The Legend of the Coney Island Hot Dog began as far back as 1867 when a German butcher, Charles Feltman opened up the very first hot dog stand in Coney Island. Actually, back then they were sausages, and being from Germany, where which in Germany were referred to as Frankfurters, hence the name “franks.” Since Feltman’s stand was so small, he decided to sell these small sausages in a roll, charging 10 cents for each. It wasn’t until 1916, when Feltman’s partner, Nathan decided to open his own stand calling it “Nathan’s Famous” and with a touch of mustard and some secret spices, Nathan’s hotdogs became known as the world’s famous hotdog. He also sold his “franks” for only a nickel. And it is this exact spot where the annual Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July “Hot Dog Eating Contest” became a legend, when in 1916, Nathan’s first year of opening, a few people had the first contest with the winner eating 13 hotdogs in 10 minutes.
Of course, one also cannot rule out summer’s favorite pastime, Baseball! What would Yankee Stadium be without those famous Nathan’s hotdogs (with an ice cold beer)!