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Move over, Nathan’s!
When it comes to competitive eating, the fabled hot dog purveyor has had Coney Island to itself... until now.
On Saturday, July 18, during the annual Siren Music Festival, competitors will chow down on spicy Buffalo wings, during the first annual “Atomic Wings” eating contest, in hopes of walking away wearing the official “Wing King Crown.”
The competition will be held, at 5:30 p.m., at the Atomic Wings booth, on Stillwell Avenue, between Surf Avenue and the Boardwalk, as Atomic Wings muscles in on traditional Nathan’s territory.
“Nathan’s hot dog eating contest was our inspiration,” acknowledges Adam Lippin, the founder of Atomic Wings, which is sponsoring the competition in conjunction with Frank’s Red Hot, the pepper-laden sauce used in 1964 for the original Buffalo wings.
“We’re hoping to create an annual event where people pig out on chicken wings and everybody cheers them on,” he added.
But, that’s where the similarity ends. The wing-eating competition will star not those who train for months to participate in competitive eating events but ordinary people, those who usually occupy the viewing stand.
The 10 competitors will be chosen, earlier the same day, from those who stop by the booth between noon and 2:30 p.m.
The choice of contestants will be completely random, Lippin said, with those who wish to participate filling out a form, and the names of contestants picked out of a hat.
The choice of Coney Island as a venue for the event, however, was strikingly deliberate. Besides the Nathan’s connection, Lippin said that the company has two stores in Brooklyn, one in Park Slope (321 Ninth Street) and one in Carroll Gardens (134 Smith Street), and is hoping to broaden its exposure to Brooklyn chowhounds, while “maximizing the fun.
“This is a fun food,” Lippin added, noting, “That being said, wing people take their wings very seriously.”
How many sauce-slathered wings will contestants be able to consumei Given that this is the first time that Atomic Wings is holding the event, Lippin admitted to being unsure. However, he said. “I used to lock myself in a room with a bucket of wings, and that’s 50.”
A total of 30 wings, he opined, would be a “low estimate. It could be 90,” Lippin went on.
A single bite per wing won’t count, he added. Contestants have to chew away on each one till “there’s no meat left on the bone,” Lippin said.
Given that Atomic Wings has cooked up “authentic traditional Buffalo wings” since 1989, he added, “This is as American event as you can get.”
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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