History of Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest

Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest - July 4th, Coney Island, NY
Long Island is full of rich history and memorable traditions. One such annual tradition is held every year on the 4th of July at Coney Island, just a couple of hours from Babylon Honda. This annual 4th of July celebration honors one of Coney Island’s favorite snacks—the hot dog.

Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest is put on every year by the century-old Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog stand. Legend has it that in 1916, four immigrants created the first hot dog eating contest at Coney Island. The winner would prove themselves as the most patriotic of the four.

How many hot dogs one can eat may not actually determine how patriotic a person is. However, there’s no denying that hot dogs are a symbol of ballparks, Coney Island, and other beloved and iconic American settings. Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest has been a fun way for folks to come together and celebrate the 4th of July each year.

In order to participate in the contest, contestants must enter one of several qualifiers, which take place in cities all over the country starting as early as March. If contestants do well here, they can move up towards competing in the official Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest on the 4th of July. This year will mark the 101st contest, and is definitely a festive event worth witnessing if you’re in the area this summer.