Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest 2017
Credit: Getty Images

The 2018 Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest is almost here and that means thousands will gather at Nathan’s Famous hot dog restaurant in Coney Island to witness one of the most popular competitive eating competitions in the world on Independence Day.  

The annual Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest brings together some of the world’s greatest competitive eaters to see who will be named the 2018 champion and take home the coveted Mustard Belt governed by Major League Eating (MLE) is the official organization that oversees professional contests.

The Nathan’s hot dog eating contest is held on the Fourth of July at the original Nathan’s Hot Dog location at the corner of Surf and Stillwell avenues in Coney Island and has become one of New York’s annual July 4th traditions. According to Nathan’s, the competition dates back to as early as 1916, but the first recorded hot dog eating contest happened in 1972.

More than 40,000 will make their way to Coney Island to watch the contest and approximately 2 million people watch it live on TV or online.

 

What time does the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest start?

The 2018 Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest will take place from 11 a.m. EST to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4. According to MLE, the pre-game show will begin at 10 a.m. with music and dance performances.

The women’s competition begins at 11 a.m. EST and the men’s competition will start at 12:30 p.m. EST. 

Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest winners

Last year, competitive eater Miki Sudo ate 41 hot dogs and buns and will defend her championship this year. On the men’s side, reigning hot dog eating champion Joey Chestnut will see if he can defend his title this year. At last year’s hot dog eating contest, Chestnut consumed a whopping 72 hot dogs and buns, which is just shy of his own record of 73.5. 

Joe Chestnut 2017 Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest winner

What does the hot dog eating champion win?

Aside from receiving a trophy, a bejeweled championship belt and worldwide recognition for their gift of gluttony, there is a cash prize for contestants at the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. According to the MLE there is $40,000 in total prize money split between the men’s and women’s groups.  

The Nathan’s hot dog eating contest winners will receive the following cash prizes:

First place: $10,000
Second place: $5,000
Third place: $2,500
Fourth place: $1,500
Fifth place: $1,000

Live stream Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest

The 2018 Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest will broadcast live on ESPN beginning at 10:50 a.m. EST for the women’s competition and 12 p.m. for the men’s competition. If you’re not in front of a TV you can catch the event streaming live on the ESPN app. 

According to Nathan’s, the men’s competition will re-air on ESPN2 at 4 p.m. and again at 7:30 p.m. EST, just in case you don’t miss all the action the first time.

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