Last week, Monroe business owner Chad Cheely presented a leather championship belt to the winner of this year’s hotdog eating contest winner.

The third annual Cheely’s Hotdog Eating Contest held July 10 at Cheely’s General Store & Café drew 12 contestants, Cheely said. One of the contestants was a woman, Emily Ann Finke, who downed nine hotdogs.

Cheely told The Tribune three of the competitors tied and a runoff was held. Sal Solis, 18, ate past the competition and took home the championship leather belt this year.

Walton County Fire Rescue Lt. Brandon Talbird won the contest in 2019 and 2020. Talbird did not participate in the contest this year, but did attend the event to lend his support. The current crop of competitors booed the former firefighter champion in a good-natured way for his decision to retire from the contest, according to Cheely.

The café and general store is located in downtown Monroe inside the Mercantile Market building on North Broad Street.

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