Burger eating challenge Saturday at Uncle Louie’s Diner

Uncle Louie’s Diner in Sturgis will host a food eating competition Saturday in which five competitors will attempt to finish the Uncle Louie’s Challenge. At left is Uncle Louie’s owner David Stewart. Pioneer file photo

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STURGIS — Eating will become a spectator sport on Saturday at Uncle Louie’s Diner in Sturgis.

Individuals representing radio stations XRock, The Eagle, KOTA, Classic Hits 92.3, and Z106 will be attempting to conquer the Uncle Louie’s Challenge.

Each radio station has done promotions to choose their competitor. And radio celebrities from each of the stations will serve as coach to their competitive eater.

The radio stations are putting up $200 prize money to whomever completes the challenge.

And just what is the challenge?

It starts with a tower of six half-pound hamburgers nestled between an oversized bun and topped with two onion rings. The burger is surrounded by a mound of French fries.

The total weight with burgers, buns, fries and all is almost seven pounds which the competitors must finish in 30 minutes or less.

To date, 30 people have tried the Uncle Louie’s Challenge, but not one has succeeded.

“I had one professional food eater come close. There were just a little bit of fries left. She said she was going to go re-train and come back,” said Uncle Louie’s owner/manager David Stewart.

The toughest part of the challenge is mental preparedness, Stewart said.

“If your mind is not set right, you are not going to be able to get through it. It’s a lot,” he said.

His advice.

“It’s just a matter of setting a pace. Within the first 10 minutes you have to be a third of the way through it,” Stewart said.

Taking the challenge is all about creating a memory, he said.

“The very first person to do it was a guy who got married the night before. He ended up putting his face in the bucket,” Stewart said.

The bucket is a 5-gallon white bucket with the words CHALLENGE FAIL written across it with a black marker. On any other day, the challenge is open to anyone for just $24.99. But the meal is free if you complete the challenge by yourself. And you get a T-shirt that says you conquered the challenge along with bragging rights for life. The restaurant, 1039 Main St., will be open during the competition, but won’t be serving any food at that time. The competitors’ tables will be placed in the center of the dining room with seating for fans around the outside.

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