Mississippi appears to have broken watermelon-eating world record

Published 10:21 am Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Saturday night’s event had more excitement around it than originally anticipated, with Mother Nature trying to play spoiler. Thunderstorms arrived in Water Valley around 6 p.m., but Eubanks was in constant communication with emergency management officials in case the weather turned out to be too dangerous. The rain eventually subsided and the watermelon-eating contest world record attempt began shortly after 8 p.m.

Each year, the carnival holds a watermelon-eating contest and Saturday night was no different, with Deunte Ragland of Water Valley winning this year’s record-setting contest. With groups of 20 people at tables set up in the infield of one of the baseball fields, the first person to eat their bag of watermelon the fastest in each group advanced to the final round.

“Just a handful at a time,” Ragland said of his strategy. “It feels good.”

With pre-made bags of watermelon weighing one pound each, Eubanks said they had over 1,000 pounds of watermelon cut and ready for the event.

Now the process of documenting and certifying that Water Valley did indeed set a new world record begins. There were several members of local media serving as evidence collectors, and three drones flying overhead to capture video and photos of participants. The Guinness World Record office also requires at least two counting methods to also help confirm the number.