Larell Marie Mele
Long Pond, PA
What is it about Larell Marie “The Real Deal” Mele that makes her so beloved among her fellow competitors? Is it her tireless enthusiasm for competing at the highest level? Perhaps it’s her megawatt Long Pond, PA-smile? Or is it those tactful words of hers, shared quietly to the loser in defeat, and in celebration with those who prevail? It is all of these things and many more besides—plus a little bit of unknowable human magic. In short, the lady’s got it. An MLE contest without The Real Deal is, it’s been said, like a day without sunshine. Which is unfortunate for chicken wing, rib or oyster-based events, as Larell Marie has sworn off debris foods or seafood-oriented events, much to the consternation of MLE brass. Instead, she has focused her considerable energies on foods that reward capacity and with excellent results to show for it: 21.25 Nathan’s Famous HDBs in 10 minutes to take 5th in the women’s finals in 2012, 9.75 cheeseburgers in 10 minutes and 15 cannolis in just six minutes. Clearly, Larell Marie has parlayed her years of experience as a fitness professional into success at the table. The Real Deal will forever be viewed as the Vivienne Westwood of Major League Eating for her skill at taking often ill-fitting contest T-shirts and turning them into fashion pieces worthy of praise. There is nothing this lady can’t do with a pair of scissors, a large clip and her very own eye for style.