GROSS-FOOD CHALLENGE Organizers mix in elements of reality TV for 'Fair Factor'
PEMBERVILLE, Ohio (AP) -- Katelyn Miller shoved her head into a toilet bowl full of chicken gizzards, chicken necks, water, Worcestershire sauce and corn, removing 16 pieces of meat with her mouth.
"It was good," the 14-year-old said afterward. "I kept taking bites of it. It kept falling out of my mouth."
Miller was one of 20 people competing for prizes last week at the Pemberville Free Fair in a contest modeled after the gross-out NBC TV show "Fear Factor."
Organizers of the fair about 19 miles southeast of Toledo call their competition "Fair Factor."
Spectators gathered around three seatless, tankless toilet bowls Thursday night to watch the first round, in which contestants had one minute to remove as many pieces of meat as possible with their mouths. People overflowed from the stands, and some took seats on the asphalt.
Adults and high-schoolers competed in separate categories for $100 prize packages that included compact discs, DVD movies and gift certificates from local businesses, said Audra Headley, one of the event's organizers. The final round was scheduled for Saturday night.
Kyle Turner, 18, of Perrysburg, said winning a prize wasn't his main motivation.
"I wanted an excuse to eat gross stuff," he said.
Turner got his wish during the pizza-eating portion of the contest, when he was treated to toppings that included live worms, sardines, black olives and hot peppers.
Headley, owner of the Front Street Cafe in Pemberville, created the recipes used in both events. "I just made it up," she said. "I'm sick."
Making matters worse, the worms wiggled and squirmed -- as if trying to escape -- as contestants bit into them.