How I wish I were a Southlake Town Square Wiener…
Oct 04, 2013 01:41PM
● By tina
Oktoberfest's premiere event had a small beginning but packs a big crowd each fall. Photos courtesy of Tim Hill.
Oktoberfest’s Wiener Race has Grown in Popularity and Size through the Years
By Tina Auten, Staff Writer
During the early years of Oktoberfest, bales of hay were used to corral energetic wiener dogs and there were approximately 10-15 contestants in the first race. Although a bit chaotic, everyone had fun and the tradition known as the Wiener Dog Race was born. Over the years the race has grown in both organization and popularity, according to longtime wiener enthusiast and Oktoberfest volunteer, Carolyn Hobbs. White-picket fencing was added along with bleachers and eventually, artificial turf and a wiener dog parade. By 2006, approximately 75 wiener dogs were entered in the race and in 2008, the race was moved from the grassy area in front of the gazebo to the grassy area in front of the Rustin Park water fountain. At that time, the six racing lanes were increased to 39 feet long and bleachers were added for spectators.
As the race has gained popularity, it has also drawn entrants from places like Abilene and Norman, Oklahoma. Last year’s race had 193 registered wieners and this year, organizers are expecting another great turnout.
Race organizer Lori McDaniel encourages competing wieners to pre-register before Saturday’s race by visiting the Oktoberfest Weiner Dog Race page. Registration on-site begins at 8:45 a.m. before the event, but competitors are urged not to wait because the Wiener Dog Parade begins at 9:45 a.m. Races begin at 10 a.m. at Town Square.