Here in America, the 4th of July is a beloved holiday filled with traditions. Cookouts, family
gatherings, and fireworks. But there’s another annual Independence Day tradition that may not
be as well-known, but it’s a spectacle to be witnessed with awe.
I’m of course referring to the Nathan’s Famous Annual Hot Dog Eating Contest. Every July 4th,
champions of the competitive eating circuit converge on New York’s famous Coney Island to
battle for encased-meat glory. Last year, the reigning champion and fan-favorite Joey Chestnut
broke the world record, packing away a gut-busting 74 hot dogs WITH BUNS in 10 minutes.
But I know a guy who might give Chestnut a run for his money. Nobody loves a hot dog like The
Tim Tracker. I think he’s a viable contender for the hot dog throne. Don’t believe me? Are you
forgetting how Tim ate 12 hotdogs last December? It was his own little “12 Dogs of Christmas”
Okay, it’s true that he didn’t eat all 12 in a single day. But Tim did accomplish a hot dog feet – or
rather almost four – that I for one cannot imagine attempting in one day. Tim attempted to eat
FOUR FEET of hot dog, with condiments, between two different theme park resorts.
The first shocking sausage was at Hot Dog Hall of Fame, located at Universal City Walk. For
some inexplicable reason, Tim added bacon and pickles to what clearly looked like way more
than two feet of hot dog bliss. A true competitor, Tim had no trouble devouring the entire
thing, leaving nothing behind but a few bacon bits.
Rather than curl up on a bench and take a nap, Tim actually took a spin on Men in Black: Alien
Attack . . . like a savage.
Then, Tim headed off to Walt Disney World for Round 2. This time at Casey’s Corner on Main
Street U.S.A. in the Magic Kingdom. The “Casey’s Special” is a two-foot Frankenstein
frankfurter, covered in crispy hash browns, bacon, cheese, French fried onions, and a Chipotle
Finishing this beast on an empty stomach is hard enough. Having already taken down a two-
footer in the same day and facing the Casey’s Special is a Herculean task not suited for mere
mortals. Not to mention, if you’ve ever had a foot-long at Casey’s, the “bun” they use is not a
typical, soft hot dog bun like most of us are used to. It’s a thick, dense bread-bowl quality bun
that expands in your tummy like one of those capsules you leave in the sink that turns into a
dinosaur. Only it doesn’t take all night. It starts around the third bite.
Still, no excuses necessary. Tim made a valiant effort, taking down roughly 10 inches to a foot of
it before finally throwing in the napkin.
Okay, so maybe Tim’s not ready for the Nathan’s stage just yet, but after devouring nearly three
feet of loaded dog and living to tell the tale, I still give him the title of Gastronomic Gladiator.
And to take a flight on Goofy’s Barnstormer right after just shows nerves of steel, or a stomach
of cast iron.
While I cannot endorse attempting to eat four feet of hot dog this July 4 th , if you’re hitting the
parks in Orlando, swing by Hot Dog Hall of Fame at City Walk, or the Magic Kingdom for lunch.
Hot (Dog) Take: The lines at Casey’s get pretty long even on a normal day – let
alone around a holiday – so keep in mind Casey’s offers mobile ordering through
the My Disney Experience App. It was a life saver for me one day with a hungry
11 year-old. We were already eating when we would’ve otherwise still been
waiting just to place our order at the counter.
Happy Independence Day to my American friends, and Happy . . . err, Hot Dog Thursday to
everybody else! It’s a thing. I just made it up.