The town Recreation and Parks Department held the town’s first pie-eating contest during the Winterfest Thursday.
Spread across tables at Brighton’s Buckland Park Lodge, the various pies — some chocolate cream, some apple — were a ticket to sweetness, and a victory.
Seven hungry contestants were poised to take on the town’s Recreation and Parks Department and become Brighton’s inaugural pie-eating champ. The Feb. 21 contest was part of the town’s annual Winterfest event, which featured clowns, a visit from Arik, Brighton’s police dog, pony rides and free food for visitors, not just pie eaters.
In under two minutes, parks department employee Mark Kritall scarfed down his pie, leaving others in the dust.
“There’s no secret, just go for it,” Kritall said after his victory. “Just don’t think about it.”
However, Kritall’s co-worker, Rich Wagner, joked that the 2008 champion had an unfair advantage because of his thick beard. After the contest, remnants of the pie remained stuck to Kritall’s mane, which he wiped away with several napkins.
“I think he’s been practicing all week!” exclaimed Wagner, who ate about a quarter of his five-inch pie. “He hasn’t eaten in three days!”
While Wagner admitted his downfall in the contest was the fact he couldn’t get past the layers of whipped cream, contest coordinator Katie Kogler said she didn’t win because she’s just not that much of a pie eater.
“When it was going up my noise, that wasn’t very comfortable,” she said, adding that she was not surprised by Kritall’s win. “His nickname is the human garbage can, so he eats just about anything around the office.”
Despite his wide-ranging palate, Kritall said he just needs someone to compete with when he defends his title next year.
“We have to have much better competition with a few more guys who can eat better,” he joked.
Bryan Roth can be reached at (585) 394-0770, Ext. 270, or at firstname.lastname@example.org