Berry binge in Ditmas Park

Face full of whipped cream: Zach Otley comes up for air after burying his face into a slice of strawberry shortcake. He was one of a few contestants that participated in the strawberry shortcake-eating contest at the Cortelyou Greenmarket.
Photo by Arthur De Gaeta

Hungry kids and adults sunk their faces into strawberry shortcake at the Cortelyou Greenmarket on Sunday in hopes of being crowned champion of the messy eaters in a cake-eating contest.

At this contest, consumption is not king, as is the case at competitions such as Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Championship. Instead, the Greenmarket, between Argyle and Rugby roads in Ditmas Park, doles out three awards: messiest eater, neatest eater, and fastest eater — a direct rebuttal to the anti-slow consumption theatrics at other contests.

“It’s just to do a fun activity that gets people at the market circled around,” said Liz Carollo, directory of publicity for the Greenmarket’s program. “It’s definitely not about quantity or how much you can eat.”

The coveted messy title went to pint-sized youth Gus Silverman, who ended the contest with a whipped cream mask that was thick enough to pass for a Halloween costume.

The turnout was good and the cake was better — and Greenmarket-goers were pleased to grab some strawberries before the season ends in two weeks.

Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at erosenberg@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2531. And follow him at twitter.com/emrosenberg.

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