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Your way down to stick: Corn dog-eating competition

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POSTED July 6, 2012 11:03 p.m.

SACRAMENTO — “It’s fun. It’s something different,” says Milo Franks of Milo Enterprises’, who will provide dozens and dozens of corn dogs for the 2012 California State Fair corn dog-eating contest. And he’s looking for hungry fairgoers willing to take on the challenge.

The preliminary round is set for 5 p.m. July 20. The final round starts at 4 p.m. July 21. All of the action will take place on the Promenade Stage.

The purse for this year’s event is $2,500, up $500 from 2011, and will be divided among the top finishers.

Head to to find more information, the entry form and a waiver. Enter before July 10 for $12 or after July 10 for $15.

There’s only one chance to earn a spot in the finals. So, start practicing: the record is 15 corndogs consumed in just seven minutes!

When asked why the corn dog is the No.1 fair food at the California State Fair –175,000 were sold last year – Franks says, “It’s easy to eat. You can walk around with it in your right hand with a soda in your left. They don’t melt like ice cream and they can’t fall apart like a sandwich. But mostly, because they’re delicious!”

Franks, who has sold corn dogs at the California State Fair for 43consecutive years, learned after the 2011 competition not to prepare the corn dogs immediately before the contest began, because the contestants burned their mouth. This year, he will make the corn dogs 30 minutes early and hold them at 140 degrees until they are set out in front of the contestants. He plans to prepare about 10 corn dogs per entrant and, at the last minute, will add a few more.

“You don’t want to run out of corn dogs while the contestants are on stage,” he says. “That would be inopportune timing”.

With a larger cash prize on the table, Milo is hoping to entice fairgoers to enter the contest to eat this iconic fair food. When asked how many participants he’d like to have, he says, “The more the merrier.”

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