‘Mouth of the South’ takes ugly prize

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Sara Gregory
FAITH ó Dale Boone ate 21 hot dogs Friday morning.
That night, he put back 17 of the ugliest Apple Uglies around.
And then he asked for a burger.
“I gotta eat a lot of vegetables now,” he said.
Boone, “the Mouth of the South,” added a new world record to the 22 he’s already garnered. He takes home a cash prize, a year’s supply of Apple Uglies and a commemorative toilet seat plaque.
Right behind Boone was Keatin “Thunder” Shelton, a 325 pound Rockwell behemoth who swallowed 14 uglies, made fresh by the Apple Baking Co. of Salisbury.
Of the 10 who tried their hand at Apple Uglies at the qualifiers Monday night, all of whom were invited back Friday, eight showed up.
“I knew what to expect the second time,” Timothy “Ace” Cameron of Granite Quarry said. He tied with Kristy Spurlock to eat 10 Uglies for third place.
Apple Ugly eating isn’t for everyone.
Those who came back took a cue from Boone.
“I came Monday night with these big cups,” Boone said. “I get here tonight, every single one of them’s got a big cup.
“They’re paying attention to me. … That’s what’s scary.”
Boone one-upped them again though: They brought bigger cups of water this time but Boone dipped each of his Uglies in a cup of hot tea.
Each Ugly-eater had 10 minutes to eat as many as they could. Drinking was allowed, but any Apple that wasn’t swallowed was an automatic disqualification.
Judges sat in front of each eater and watched to make sure all the rules were followed.
As judges kept count of the Uglies as they disappeared, the crowd cheered for Shelton with each Ugly swallowed.
Apple Baking Co. wants to make the eating competition an annual event. Shelton said he might have to come back to represent the locals.
“For the local boy to go against a professional eater, I don’t think three down is too bad,” he said.