My Hometown Plans To Create The World's Largest Hot Dog And I've Never Been Prouder

Union, New Jersey's current claims to "fame" include a Revolutionary War battlefield, a structure that was once the world's tallest water sphere, and its title as the birthplace of both Ray Liotta and me, Kate Bernot. But later this week, Union will have yet another, more glorious feather in its cap: It will be home to the world's largest hot dog.

Advertisement reports Union Pork Store owner Leszek "Jabi" Jablonski will on Wednesday present a a 44.3-pound hot dog encased in a 31-pound hot dog bun in an attempt to take the Guinness World Record for largest hot dog. Honestly, I was a bit surprised that the world's largest hot dog didn't rank in the triple-digits, weight-wise. But apparently, there's no current record for the world's largest hot dog. None! The hot dog will be displayed Wednesday at Ulysses Restaurant in NYC's Financial District, with slices available for a suggested donation of $10; proceeds will benefit Headstrong Project, a nonprofit that serves post-9/11 veterans.

Union Pork Store has quite the reputation for sausages, as my father (a frequent customer) can attest. The shop, which has been in business under different owners since 1946, makes more than 100 varieties of sausages and hot dogs. The sausage that's contending for the record is an all-beef hot dog based on the shop's signature recipe. It seems like just the place to take on such an important record-making task, and I'm not the only one who thinks so. Feltman's hot dog stand owner and historian Michael Quinn, when thinking of whom he might call to bring his dream of the world's largest hot dog to life, went straight to Jablonski.


"When I called Jabi to ask if he could make the world's largest hot dog, he sounded like he had been waiting for this call for his entire life," Quinn told

This Union native wishes Jabi and Union Pork Store godspeed on their very important mission. I can't wait for them to set the record, if only so others can break it in the future.