This story was published in 2019 For the 2021 update about Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest CLICK HERE
Suzanne Corbett, STLSportsPage.com Food/Travel Editor
Nathan’s Famous will host the Missouri qualifier for its annual Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest at 4:45 pm on Saturday, June 1, 2019. The event will take place at the Ford Plaza at Busch Stadium, 700 Clark Ave, St. Louis, MO 63102.
The top male and female finishers in the event will qualify for a seat at the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island, Brooklyn, on July 4th, where they will face reigning champions Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo.
“The launch of the Nathan’s Famous hot dog-eating contest circuit means that we are on our way toward the most exciting day of the year – July 4th,” said Phil McCann, Senior Director of Marketing of Nathan’s Famous. “We are seeking new talent in St. Louis to represent our nation on the most patriotic day of the year.”
“The Nathan’s hot dog-eating contest is a holiday celebration that is recognized across the globe,” said Major League Eating Chair George Shea. “There is no greater honor on July 4th than competing against the greatest eaters in the world on the big stage in Coney Island.”
In recent years, an estimated 35,000 fans have traveled to the corner of Surf and Stillwell avenues in Coney Island to watch the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest in person. The live telecast of the event has consistently attracted millions of viewers since ESPN first aired the contest in 2004.
According to legend, the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest has occurred each July 4th in Coney Island, N.Y., since 1916, the year Nathan Handwerker opened the beloved restaurant. MLE, the governing body of all stomach-centric sports, sanctions the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog-Eating Circuit and ensures the contests are judged professionally and that safety standards are in place at each event.
Those interested in competing in the Missouri qualifier should visit www.majorleagueeating.com to obtain information and register. All competitors must be over 18 years of age.