By Josh Mitchell
Corinth Today News Editor
For the first time since 2012 there will not be a World Slugburger Eating Championship in Corinth, but there will be new events added to grow the festival, an official said.
Main Street Corinth Director Angela Avent said Slugburger Festival organizers decided to take a break from the eating contest, which was sanctioned by Major League Eating.
While the slugburger eating contest won’t take place this year, there will still be many live bands and lots of carnival fun Friday and Saturday. The Slug Voice competition begins at 6 p.m. Friday in the CARE Garden in downtown Corinth followed by Dr. Zarr and the Amazing Funk Monsters.
The slugburger eating contest attracted nationally known competitive eaters, including Joey “Jaws” Chestnut, who set a new world record this month in the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July hotdog eating contest in Coney Island, N.Y.
It is costly to bring the Major League Eating competitors to Corinth, and officials decided to use the money for different activities this year, Avent added.
The carnival opens at 5 p.m. Friday and noon Saturday, and wristbands to enjoy all the rides cost $20.
Several bands will play Saturday starting at 4 p.m., with American Idol winner Trent Harmon of Amory scheduled to take the stage at 8 p.m.
A cornhole tournament will be added to the festival lineup. Avent noted that a cornhole tournament was held during the St. Patrick’s Day Downtown Throwdown in Corinth and was a big hit.
The cornhole tournament will be at 1 p.m. in the CARE Garden in downtown Corinth, and 32 teams with two members each will be accepted. Registration for the cornhole tournament begins at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, and the cost is $20 per team. First place will win $100 and second gets $50.
There is a possibility that the eating contest could be brought back in a few years, Avent said. The slugburger eating contest has been held the past six years.
After an event takes place several years in a row it can become “stagnant,” Avent said. It rained during the eating contest last year, and there was a small crowd, she added.
In past years, the Corinth contest has drawn lively audiences who cheer on the eaters while enjoying the entertaining oratory from the Major League Eating announcer.
Chestnut won the past three slugburger championships, but Matt Stonie still holds the record at 43 in 10 minutes.
There will also be a Miss Slugburger Pageant at 1 p.m. at the Corinth Coliseum for ages 0-19, and participants can sign up at the door for $30 starting at 11:30 a.m. It is sponsored by Sparkle Formal Wear.
Officials are trying to grow the daytime activities at the Slugburger Festival to attract people to the downtown area to shop at boutiques and enjoy local restaurants, Avent noted. Next year, the festival would like to add crafters and artisans to the festival.
For a full schedule of this year’s festival, visit the Main Street Corinth Facebook page by clicking here.