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Photos: Bellevue Gold Star Chili Coney Eating Contest

It all started with a steamed hot dog between a fluffy bun soaked in rich hot chili and topped with cool shredded cheese. And in seven minutes, he’d eaten 13.

Nick Schreck, of Edgewood, out-ate more than 20 participants in the Bellevue Gold Star Coney Eating Contest on Thursday.

“I saw the a post on Facebook about the contest and thought I’d give it a try,” Schreck said.

Schreck, who has previously participated in weenie eating contests, now holds this competition’s record.

“In six years, this is the most anyone has eaten,” said Geanetta Steely, who hosts the event to raise funds for the Lupus Foundation. Lupus a long-term autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system becomes hyperactive and attacks normal, healthy tissue. Symptoms include inflammation, swelling, and damage to the joints, skin, kidneys, blood, heart, and lungs.

Steely’s daughter, Kim Balser, was diagnosed with Lupus twenty years ago. Steely said she’s had seven strokes and three open heart surgeries.

“We hope with this contest to support the Lupus Foundation so that we can have a cure or find better ways to treat Lupus,” Steely said.

Cost to enter the contest was $10, with all proceeds going toward funds also raised through Steely’s participation in the Lupus Walk to be held April 27, at Winton Woods.

Bellevue’s fire and police departments showed up to participate, as well as residents from Bellevue and all over Northern Kentucky.

Justin Caudill, 28, of Bellevue, said he was “ready to eat for a good cause.”

“This was my first eating contest,” he said. “I’d been tempted in the past, but now was the time to go ahead with it. This is a really good cause.”

Caudill tied second with two others for devouring eight conies.

Bellevue Police Officer Trevor Bonar said he hadn’t eaten all day. “I’d been saving up for this.”

“This is a great thing for this charity,” he said. “I’m happy to support this cause.”

With focus, an empty stomach, and swift swallowing, Nick Schrek staked claim on the Coney Eating Contest trophy and bragging rights.

“I’m excited,” he said. “I’m pretty happy.”

Bellevue Police Chief Lt. Col. Lee Estepp and Bellevue Fire Chief Chris Adkins face off in a coney eating contest.

Daniel Hodge holds his nephew Eli Hodge, 3, as they cheer on Eli’s dad David Hodge in the coney eating contest

Dave Hardin scarfs down a coney

Spectators Charlie Ackerson and Jeni Caudill cheer on the coney eaters, filming each bite on their phones.  

Nick Schrek quickly chews another bite of a coney.

Charles Thompson shoves a coney in his mouth.

Bellevue Fireman Tyler Watson and Bellevue Police Officer Trevor Bonar tear into their coneys.

James Poynter paces himself in the coney eating contest.

Story and photos by Melissa Reinert, RCN contributor

Top photo: Nick Schrek, of Edgewood, poses with his Bellevue Gold Star Chili Coney Eating Contest trophy after eating 13 conies in seven minutes (RCN)

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