Every region of the country has its great eating competitions, and the North is no exception. The region offers a tempting and tasty array of local delicacies that show off its best foods. Take a road trip to explore the culinary wonders found in this part of the country, and show off your competitive eating skills along the way. Devour bratwursts, gobble up bacon or chomp your way through corn on the cob at these eating competitions.
1. Old Fashioned Corn Roast Festival
August 21-22, 2015
Nothing says “summer” quite like giant ears of fresh corn on the cob. At the Old Fashioned Corn Roast Festival, eating competitors can munch their way around as much corn as they can possibly stomach… and then inhale a few more cobs. Beyond the corn-eating contest, the annual festival includes a corn-shucking competition and other activities. The festival will be held August 21 and 22 in Loveland, Colorado.
2. Indiana Bacon Festival
August 29, 2015
There’s feasting on bacon as part of a big breakfast, and then there’s inhaling a full pound of crispy cooked bacon in five minutes. The Indiana Bacon Festival challenges you to do the latter, and it’s a lot harder than it sounds. Last year’s contestants couldn’t do it. Will someone conquer the challenge this year? Bring your determination — and your appetite — to Delphi, Indiana on August 29.
3. Midwest Wizard of Oz Fest
September 11-13, 2015
It’s not every day you can combine a passion for competitive eating with the love of a classic film. But the Midwest Wizard of Oz Fest offers just that unique opportunity. Grab your favorite pair of ruby slippers and head to Tinley Park, Illinois (near Chicago) for Auntie Em’s pie-eating contest among other festival activities. The festival, which also includes a carnival and other attractions, will be held September 11 through September 13.
4. Ohio Pawpaw Festival
September 11-13, 2015
Celebrate the start of fall with the Ohio Pawpaw Festival, held September 11 through September 13 in Albany, Ohio. The three-day event spotlights the country’s largest native tree fruit, which, of course, requires a pawpaw-eating contest. Contestants compete to see who can eat the pulp off the pawpaw’s seeds first. There’s a catch: competitors must gobble up the food with their hands behind their backs.
5. Minneapolis Oktoberfest
October 2-4, 2015
Hoist your favorite stein and then chow down on a giant plate of bratwursts at the Minneapolis Oktoberfest’s bratwurst-eating competition. Contestants are challenged to eat as many bratwursts as possible during the annual welcoming of fall. The celebration will be held October 2 through October 4 and also inclued live music performances, keg bowling and the long dog derby.
If you’re looking to enter additional eating competitions, keep in mind that the outdoor eating competition is shorter up North. Many (but certainly not all) contests in the region are scheduled before mid-October and the arrival of colder weather.