Chicago celebrates 7th annual Hot Dog Festival

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CHICAGO — The Chicago History Museum's annual Hot Dog Festival entered its 7th year and people from all over came to try a Chicago dog.

Kathryn Boswell just moved from Atlanta, Georgia and attended the festival.

"I’m from the south, so this is definitely new to me, but I love it," Boswell said.

There were all sorts of hot dogs at the event: charred, steamed, Chicago-style and more.

The festival was steps away from the Chicago History Museum. Tyler Monaghan, an employee at the Chicago History Museum, tracked the lineage of the icon in a bun.

"It starts with the first World’s Fair in Chicago in 1893, vienna beef, so it represents us and that we’re proud of," Monaghan said.

Mike Payne, owner of Byron's Hot Dogs, has been serving up Chicago style hot dogs since 1965. Chicago-style dogs consist of mustard, relish, onion, tomato, pickle, sport pepper and celery salt, all nestled in a poppy seed bun. The one condiment Chicago dogs don't have is ketchup.

Payne took the Chicago dog to the White House for a congressional picnic in 2010.

"My wife and I were in their kitchen for two days before the event showing them how to make hot dogs, showing them how to cut the vegetables the right way," Payne said. "We'll never forget it."

Chicago’s Dog House in Lincoln Park is another mainstay where the char dog is king, and so are the varieties.

"Polish's, alligator sausages, rattlesnake and rabbit, some wagyu beef," Aaron Wolfson, owner of Chicago's Dog House, said.


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