Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

July 3, 2014

Man vs. Food

Monster burger claims three

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE — Four people went toe-to-toe with a 2.5-pound burger and a plate full of fries during the first-ever Man vs. Food competition recently at Moody Air Force Base.

Air Force Senior Airman Christopher Lee was the only one of four to finish the burger, and despite not finishing all the fries, was still ultimately named the victor.

The event was the brainchild of Air Force Senior Airman Arthur Williams, 23d Force Support Squadron food services specialist, who also prepared and cooked all four burgers.

“The idea came because I was sitting in my living room, just watching the show itself and realized I hadn’t seen any base or heard of any base that had a competition like this,” said Williams. “(I thought) we could do something interesting and special if we had a competition like that.”

After conceiving the idea, Williams had to figure out all the logistics of the event. He said one of the biggest challenges was figuring out how to cook four 2.5-pound burgers. To ensure the enormously thick burgers were cooked all the way, Williams first seared them, and then baked them in an oven to the correct temperature.

Then, as the four competitors sat at the long brown table, servers set the covered trays in front of each of them. As the covers were taken off and the burger revealed, there was a mix of thoughts from the competitors.

One said it didn’t look that bad, while another uttered that he already regretted sitting down for the competition.

As the event started, the audience cheered, offered encouragement and even started playing music for the four competitors.

“The overall goal is simple: morale,” said Williams. “We can all come together and enjoy. ... It’s kind of nice. I want everybody to smile and enjoy themselves.”

After the hour was up, all four competitors were slumped over their chairs with defeated looks on their faces.

Lee, winner of Moody’s Man vs. Food, said he watches the television show and joked that he thought he liked burgers before tackling the 2.5-pound monster burger.

Williams said he hopes to host another Man vs. Food in the future, hopefully involving something very spicy. The dining facility staff has also tentatively scheduled a cupcake wars baking competition for August.

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