Kyle Twede, owner of Twede’s Café, has always loved a good, messy, sticky food-eating contest. At age 13, Twede challenged his 11-year-old brother, Shane, to a pancake-eating contest. Together, they consumed 40 pancakes.
This year, at 2 p.m. on Saturday at the Community Stage, at the intersection of North Bend Way and Bendigo, 12 brave souls will be challenged to eat as many pancakes as their stomachs can hold.
Contestants will have 10 minutes to eat their pancakes. Twede guarantees that all pancakes will be uniform to ensure maximum fairness. The winner will receive a pig trophy.
Since the North Bend Block Party started four years ago, Twede’s Café has hosted a food eating contest every year.
The first two years, six teams with four contestants each raced to see which team could consume a five-pound hamburger on a two-foot bun first. The second year, one of the contestants decided to get messy, and sprayed audience members with an array of ketchup and mustard.
Twede decided to do away with the group eating contests and last year brought in the hot wings. Contestants were challenged to eat six hot wings, brushed with fiery sauces and served, one at a time, with hot sauces ranging from 47 times hotter than Tabasco sauce to 4,782 times hotter, or about 4 million Scoville heat units. For comparison, Tabasco has about 2,500 units on the Scoville scale.
Each year, during the Festival at Mount Si, Twede’s Café also holds a cherry-pie-eating contest. Kids who participate are encouraged to use their toes, noses and hands to shovel food into their mouths.
“When I was a kid I was in a pie-eating contest that I looked forward to for weeks,” said Twede. “But when I got there, they tied my hands behind my back.”
Twede wanted to eat as much and as fast as he could and hated not being able to use his hands. Thus, he doesn’t put any restriction on his food-consuming warriors.
“Some of the kids look really happy about it,” said Twede.
Since 1940, the little café on the corner of North Bend Way has been serving cherry pie, pancakes, hamburgers, hot wings and milk shakes to residents and visitors to the Snoqualmie Valley.
Whether at the eating contest or just sitting inside the restaurant in a blue booth, Twede loves being able to serve cheeseburgers every day.