Saturday, January 19, 2013

Pondering Pronto Pups Tradition

How long would you wait for a hot dog? My wife and I waited one hour and 10 minutes--70 minutes--for four hot dogs. That's 17.5 minutes per dog.

Actually, they were "pronto pups." Also known as corn dogs, or hot dogs on a stick dipped in batter and deep fried. Here in Grand Haven they are part of our community pride. And they are normally a summer thing. But every January the little hut on Harbor Drive opens for a three-day weekend and lines of my fellow locals line up in the cold for this little delicacy.

Some people were ordering just a couple to eat as they walked back to their cars to warm back up. Others were ordering dozens and walking away with boxes full of them. In the time we were there the line seemed to stay constant, with more folks coming behind us to fill in for those who walked away with pups in hand.

And I have to ask: why?

Well it could be just the tradition. What else is there to do in this beach town in mid-winter but stand in line in the cold with your neighbors for battered meat on a stick? It could be that it's a fundraiser, and people are willing to endure giving up some time and warm toes to help a cause. It could be just that people love pronto pups, and having a couple in January reminds them of summer.

Whatever the reason, we did it. The pups tasted good after the 70 minute wait. Now we only have to wait 5 months to have them again. At least then the wait will be shorter and the temps will be warmer.

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