Nathan's admits historic myth behind eating contest

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It turns out the "history" behind Nathan's 4th of July hot dog eating competition is a little mythical. (WPVI)

It turns out the "history" behind Nathan's 4th of July hot dog eating competition is a little mythical.

The original story reads that the contest started in 1916 as a way for newly-arrived immigrants to prove which of them was more patriotic.

Well, publicists are now admitting they made the story up in the 1970s, to get more attention for the hot dog chain.

The former Nathan's president says the first recorded contest was actually in 1972.

It seems the little fib may have worked though. Now-a-days, more than 30,000 people attend the competition and even more will be watching it on television on Monday.

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