Buffalo Wing Eating Contest

Eating contest enthusiasts rejoice! America's top-ranked competitive eaters - including national hot dog champion Cookie Jarvis and world egg-eating champion Eric Booker and world pelemeni-eating champion Dale Boone - and will converge in Buffalo, NY at the National Buffalo Wing Festival on Labor Day weekend for the 2003 Buffalo Chicken Wing-Eating Championships.

The festival, which is expected to draw more than 40,000 people, will take place on Saturday and Sunday, August 30 and 31 at Buffalo's Dunn Tire Park. The chicken wing-eating championship on Sunday, August 31, is the culmination of a national wing eating circuit that has been conducted throughout the year. Two final qualifying rounds for the championship will be held on Friday, August 29 and Saturday, August 30.

Most of the eaters competing in the Wing Eating Championship are ranked members of the International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE). Cookie Jarvis, the top ranked American eater, is national hot dog eating champion, rib eating champion and ice cream eating champion. Eric Booker, former American hot dog eating champion and current holder of five world titles, will be in attendance, as will Dale Boone, who was recently named IFOCE Rookie of the Year.

Oleg Zhornitiskiy, the 2002 National Buffalo Wing Eating Champion and a native of Ukraine, will return to defend his title. At stake is a total purse of $2,000, with $1,000 going to the winner, $700 to second place finisher and $300 to third. In addition, the winner will receive possession of the bejeweled Championship Wing Eating Belt.

"I look forward to welcoming the finest athletic eaters in America to the birthplace of the Buffalo Wing," said Drew Cerza, organizer of the National Buffalo Wing Festival who is known in the competitive eating community as the 'Wing King.' "Buffalo is a great sports town and I am confident Festival attendees will enjoy watching the world's greatest eaters go after our city's most famous fare."

The National Buffalo Wing Festival is a weekend long celebration of the mighty Buffalo wing. It begins on Friday, August 29th at the venerable Anchor Bar and continues through Sunday, August 31st. The Anchor Bar kick off consists of a media luncheon at 12 noon followed by a buffalo wing eating clinic hosted by two top-ranked eaters and an IFOCE official. The remainder of the weekend's activities, which include a Miss Buffalo Wing pageant, live music performances, and the Franks Red Hot wing sauce competition, will take place at Dunn Tire Park.

On Friday and Saturday at 5pm, the IFOCE will conduct the final regional wing eating qualifying contests. Aspiring competitive eaters can qualify for Sunday's championship event by winning one of the preliminary rounds.

The International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE) has sanctioned the Wing Eating Contest as part of its Harvest Series, a fall circuit of competitive eating events making stops in Seymour, WI, New York, NY, and Reno, NV. The IFOCE conducted the national chicken wing eating circuit for Franks RedHot Sauce, a sponsor of the national Buffalo Wing Festival.

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