Combine a blistering hot afternoon and some cool melon slices and what do you get?
A very welcome watermelon eating contest, held Saturday, July 7, during the “Rumble Over Rough” festival at Rough River Dam State Resort Park, sponsored by Rough River Businesses and Tourism.
The object was simple: eat as much as possible of two melon slices in a few minutes. Swallowing was absolutely required, and contestants could stop at any point if they felt sick.
With the ground rules established, the contest began with the 8- to 10-year-olds. Two quickly became the ones to beat, mowing through their melons at breakneck speed.
Jordan Vincent of Greenwood, Ind., in the area visiting his grandparents, had an “attack” eating style that moved him ahead of the pack.
But it was Gunner Aberli’s “corn on the cob” technique that had the crowd chuckling — and the melon’s red flesh rapidly disappearing.
His approach — gobbling from side to side as fast as possible — vaulted him to the winners’ circle.
Scarfing down the melon was “what my dad told me to do,” Gunner explained. “We decided to just eat it like they do in the cartoons.”
It was advice Gunner’s dad, Tom Aberli, followed for a second-place finish in the packed adult division.
The family lives in Louisville, but has a place at Meadowlake they visit on the weekends.
Finishing first in the adult division was Adinna Pharris of Leitchfield, who also used an attack eating style.
Rounding out the winners were Sonya Moreman and Alex Dennis, who took first and second place, respectively, in the teen division.