What happens when you bring together 11 high school football teams and tell them to send their best two eaters forward to devour as many hot dogs as possible in a three-minute span?
Here’s a hint: The restaurant runs low on hot dogs and loses a little money. And the hot dogs don't win.
Of course, that’s just part of the fun of the Hooley House/News Herald High School Football Hot Dog Eating Contest (or the HHNHHSFHDEC, if you’re into ridiculously long acronyms that further confuse the situation).
For the third straight year, the News Herald, a newspaper based outside of Cleveland in Northeast Ohio, and a Mentor restaurant called Hooley House have hosted the event, which aims to bring together 11 football teams from across the area to support their teammates in a gastronomical endeavor modeled after the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July competition.
Like the Nathan’s famous event, the Hooley House featured water dunking dogs and others who played it straight, eating each item of tubular meat as it came.
In the end, Mentor (Ohio) High emerged from the contest victorious, with its representatives Brandon Ray and Matt Zolack knocking off the other eaters with aplomb. As USA Today noted, they weren’t quite at a Joey Chestnut level, but they did show a penchant for putting down quite a few dogs.
Now that the Hooley House/News Herald High School Football Hot Dog Eating Contest (HHNHHSFHDEC) is done, its time to head into summer training sessions for football season. Luckily, those didn’t begin right after the HHNHHSFHDEC. That would have been even more gross than the leftover buns at Hooley House.