2020 Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest to Be Held at Private Location Without Fans

The 2020 Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest will still take place this summer, but there will be some changes due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. This week, it was announced that the Fourth of July tradition will go on as planned but it will take place at a private location.

The event generally draws thousands of fans and viewers to Coney Island each year.

In addition to the secret location, the event will be held without fans and there will be 1/3 of the usual amount of competitors in order to ensure social distancing, according to TMZ Sports. However, competitive eating icon Joey Chestnut is still expected to participate as he aims to break his own record of 74 hot dogs in 10 minutes.

All competitors will be tested for COVID-19 prior to the competition, while all staffers will be required to wear masks and gloves.

As an added bonus, Major League Eating and the competitors will be donating to local food banks and will take time to honor essential workers who have been battling the pandemic on the front lines.


The coronavirus outbreak has led to the cancellation or postponing of many large events including The Masters, NCAA Tournament, Coachella, SXSW, the Winter X Games, Stagecoach, Ultra Music Festival in Miami, and more. The NBA, NHL, and MLS have temporarily suspended their seasons.

The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).

The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.

While a majority of the cases have been detected in the United States and China — with more than 118,000 deaths in the United States — it has now reached many countries around the world. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.

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