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The Knott’s Boysenberry Festival World Pie Eating Championship

Location: Buena Park, CA
Date: 03-19-2016
Winner: Joey Chestnut with a new WR of 14.5lb in 8 min!


The photos told the story and this old scribe knows that there's no prose that can compete with the camera when it comes to offering a précis of happenings. (Bring me the head of Louis Daguerre.) So instead of the usual event recap here, allow a brief description of the various photos that appeared on a variety of social media platforms following Joey Chestnut's world record-setting victory at the 2016 The Knott’s Boysenberry Festival World Pie Eating Championship. Chestnut ate 14.5lb of Knott's Berry Farm Boysenberry Pie in eight minutes, besting his previous world record by half a pound. All the shared photos from the event centered on the theme of Chestnut’s visage post-contest. This is what they looked like.

Chestnut stands triumphant, back erect, chest out—a true example of American man in the prime of his existence. The contest is over. The trophy is his. The crowd, once more and evermore, chants his name: Joey, Joey, Joey. The second syllable sounds like "we." The chant unites all. Chestnut's tent is a big tent.

The California sun kisses his grizzled cheeks. These cheeks sport hair now, for Chestnut has become one of the bearded. Fear not: His beard is one in the true pioneer tradition, not a quaffed prop all too commonly found all the way from Brooklyn to Portland these days. No. His beard is the beard of a man who can handle a rope. A man whose word is true. A man who wrestles bears. A man who calls it caving, not spelunking, because caving is simpler and more to the point. It is a business beard, despite the hairiness.

His beard is a sight—crass crimson and cast to mess. The boysenberry pie filling has stained it a bruised red, as though blood has painted his face, the inevitable outcome of his cruel and vicious intent. This is eating at its most elemental. This is eat or be eaten. It is the beard of madness. The mind is thrown to Goya's Black Period. Has Chestnut tasted human flesh? Is this the face of a madman? Has he become Saturn Devouring His Son?

He has not. He has tasted 14.5lb of Knott's Berry Farm boysenberry pie in eight minutes. He has set a new world record. His face speaks not of Saturn's terror but of joy. His grin is wide. The applause rings out. He hoists the trophy. The world, once more, is his. Sanity prevails. Soon there will be calm.

Full results below. Props to Steve Hendry, the quiet man of competitive eating, for his silver-medal finish.

FULL RESULTS! 1) Joey Chestnut, 14.5lb in 8 minutes, a new World Record. 2) Steve Hendry - 10.25lb 3) Miki Sudo- 9.5lb 4) Michelle Lesco - 9lb 5) Rich LeFevre & Justin Mih - 8.5lb 7) Jon Davis & Carlene LeFevre - 3.5lb 9) Lesley Ryder 3 10) Daniel Lujan 2.5 11) Barbara LaBarge & Lillian Canales 1.5

This contest took place at 2pm Pacific on Saturday, March 19, 2016 on the Calico Stage in Knott's Berry Farm, 8039 Beach Blvd, Buena Park, CA 90620!

ABOUT THE KNOTT'S BOYSENBERRY FESTIVAL! Celebrate Knott’s historic boysenberry this spring during Knott’s Boysenberry Festival, March 19 – April 3. The 16-day food festival features over 70, one-of-a-kind boysenberry inspired dishes, drinks and more, plus live entertainment, the Wine and Craft Brew Tasting Garden, and folksy fun activities the whole family will love!

CLICK HERE for more information on Knott's Berry Farm!

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*All applicants must be 18 years of age or older and fully acknowledge and understand the inherent dangers and risks associated with participating in an eating contest. The applicant further acknowledges and understands that the MLE/IFOCE coordinates with event sponsor(s) to select and approve eligible participants, and that the MLE/IFOCE shall decide, at its sole discretion, whether an applicant is eligible to participate in any eating event, and/or related activities. The MLE/IFOCE may revoke an applicant's eligibility to participate in the eating contest, or related activities, at any time, for any reason, at its sole discretion. The MLE/IFOCE and the event sponsors reserve the right, at any time, to change any and all details concerning the event, including, e.g., time, duration, location and prize structure.

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