The sixth annual Coney dog eating contest is coming up on June 22 at the Coney Island Lunch Room parking lot in Grand Island.

The fast and furious eating will begin at 10 a.m.

Coney Island’s Coney dog eating contest started when Kacey Cabbage, the event organizer, was waitressing at the downtown diner and decided the Grand Island area needed a local charity event.

Cabbage said she saw a need for a local charity that would focus on helping local families.

So George Katrouzos, the owner of Coney Island Lunch Room, and Cabbage started the contest. It is set up so participants have 10 minutes to eat as many plain Coney dogs as they can. Last year’s winner, Sam Martin, ate 13, but the overall record for the event is 14½ Coney dogs.

Community members are welcome to support the competitors at no cost. However, Cabbage encourages people to participate for an entry fee of $20. All of the proceeds from the event will go to Rockin’ Against Cancer. This local nonprofit organization raises funds to donate to local families battling cancer and as well as to the Cancer Research Institute.

Rockin’ Against Cancer was founded in 2013 by Zach Martinez and his cousins after Martinez lost his mother to cancer. Since then, the nonprofit has focused on providing assistance to local families as well as funding research. Rockin’ Against Cancer also provides two $1,000 scholarships for eligible Grand Island High School graduating seniors.

Rockin’ Against Cancer has also teamed up with the Grace Foundation over the holidays to help families battling cancer with Christmas gifts and much more.

For more information about Rockin’ Against Cancer, visit the website:

Cabbage said about 20 local businesses are donating prizes and financially sponsoring the event, including Grand Auto Sales, Pinnacle Bank, Performance Liquids and FedEx Ground.

More volunteers are needed for setup, helping with participants and cleanup.

To register to compete or volunteer, call (308) 380-6185 or stop in to see Katrouzos at Coney Island. The first 26 people to sign up will receive free Coney Island t-shirts.

Natalie Saenz is The Independent's summer intern for 2019. She welcomes news tips and information 24/7!

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