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According to the ESPN3 schedule, the broadcast of the Nathan's women's contest will start at 10:45 eastern. ESPN3 will also have cameras focused on Miki Sudo and Joey Chestnut when they compete. The men's contest will be live on ESPN2 starting at noon eastern.
ESPN's Sport Science segment about Nathan's hot dog eating contest can be viewed on youtube. update The link has been fixed, but the video is now private.
A video of the full ESPN broadcast of the 2016 Nathan's finals is available on youtube.
The July 4 schedule for all ESPN channels is out now, and it does not appear the men's or women's finals will be shown live on any of them and will be relegated to ESPN3.com streaming. From 10 am - noon, ESPN Classic will show reruns of men's contests instead of showing the 206 women's contest live.

2016 Nathan’s finals live on ESPN3.com

The ESPN3.com schedule for July 4 is now out. The men’s & women’s Nathan’s finals will be live streamed on that platform. The broadcast will be tape-delayed on ESPN at 3pm eastern due to Wimbledon coverage.

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2016 Nathan’s finals on ESPN at 3pm

The ESPN schedule for July 4, 2016 lists the first showing of the Nathan’s finals at 3 pm. This will be a three hour tape-delay if the competition has its traditional noon start time, as the countdown counter on nathansfamous.com implies. There will also be three reruns on ESPN2. The July 4 web-streaming schedule for ESPN3.com, which shows the women’s division, is not yet available.

It appears that both ESPN and ESPN2 will be broadcasting tennis from Wimbledon while the Nathan’s finals competitions take place.

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In a medium.com post, Darren Rovell says that a report on Kobayashi's victory in the Nathan's 2001 finals where he doubled the pre-existing record was the most sent ESPN.com article of 2001.
ESPN has a blog entry about the competitive eating accomplishments of Dillan Gibbons, a Florida high school offensive lineman who has comitted to play for Notre Dame. He ate three challenge burgers at Cheeburger Cheeburger yesterday.
SportsTVRating has the viewership numbers for Saturday's televised sports. The rating for the live Nathan's brpadcast on ESPN2 was 0.4 (highest of the day) and the audience was 1,129,000 (second to primetime NASCAR race). The combined audience for the 4 showings of the finals on July 4 ws 2.38 million.

Hot Dog 148th anniversary / “Little Arlene” photoshop

Today is the 48th anniversary of an event held at Nathan’s Famous Coney Island location on June 30, 1967 to commemorate the centennial of the invention of the hot dog in 1867. The UPI reported that Walter Paul ate 127 hot dogs in an hour at that celebration. This is the first Nathan’s hot dog eating contest that can be found in online news archives.

Research has not been able to turn up any more information about the competition, but a picture taken at that event of a bathing-suit clad model holding a plate of hot dogs has been circulating on social media. I have not been able to determine the name of the model or the original image source.

A modified version of this image was used in ESPN’s documentary about the St. Louis Spirits of the ABA to illustrate big-eating “Little Arlene”, a halftime performer for that franchise. (direct link to image in youtube video.) I doubt the woman was Arlene, but I have never seen a picture of her.

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The 2015 broadcast schedule for the men's Nathan's finals is now available. The contest will be live on ESPN2 at noon and then rerun seven more times on July 4. It does not appear the women's contest will be televised.
ESPN SportsCenter will be broadcast from Coney Island the morning of July 4 on ESPN2 to promote the Nathan's finals.
The schedule for the ESPN family of channels is now available for July 4, 2015. The men's Nathan's contest will be live on ESPN2 starting at noon and be rerun at 1pm, 2pm and 4pm (on ESPN) that afternoon. For the fifth straight year, the women's contest will not be televised on a cable channel; it does not currently appear on the ESPN3.com July 4 streaming schedule. (The ESPN3 schedule does list Ultimate Disc League and cricket competitions).
Sports Media Watch has this year's TV schedule for Wimbledon. ESPN will show tennis from 8am to 4pm Eastern, which will relegate the live broadcast of the Nathan's finals to ESPN2 or another network. (Since July 4 is a Saturday this year, the Nathan's finals could be shown on ABC without conflicting with local news or other weekday programming.)
Youtube has a mini-mockumentary about the Championship Eating Network. The fictional channel is used as an example of a minimally-viewed offering which is required to be included in cable packages and is part of Consumer Action's campaign against the practice of bundling. (via IBTimes.com)
Bill "El Wingador" Simmons is mentioned in Bill Simmons' latest grantland.com column in a section about people with the same name as famous sports figures. The "Sports Guy" does not think the connection works since he claims to have never used cocaine, and "El Wingador" went to prison for drug distribution.
ESPN has a blog entry about University of Virginia football players competing in the Munchin for Memory hot dog eating contest on Sunday to benefit Alzheimer's research. Fullback Vincent Croce was the runner up with 11 hot dogs.
UFC champion Ronda Rousey faced off against sports radio host Mike Golic in a marshmallow eating challenge.
Matt Stonie announces he will appear on ESPN2's SportsNation at 3pm EDT today and will face Michelle Beadle and Marcellus Wiley in a bacon eating contest. update A video of the appearance is available
Oregon Live has an article and video about Takeru Kobayashi's appearance at yesterday's Portland State game where he ate 16 slices of pizza in under 2 minutes. The appearance made #10 on ESPN's top 10 list for October 18. update A video of the top 10 list is available (via Robbie Parness)
The Cheap Seats episodes where the Sklar brothers commentate on the 2004 Nathan's finals and 2005 US Open of Competitive Eating can be viewed on youtube.
The National Buffalo Wing-Eating Championship will be web-streamed on ESPN3 on August 31 at 5 pm eastern.
SportsMediaWatch reports that the tape-delayed Nathan's finals set a viewership record on ESPN2 of 2.8 million. The audience was boosted by the World Cup match preceding it, which had 4.9 million viewers.
A press release announces that ESPN has extended its agreement with Nathan's Famous to televise its hot dog eating contest until 2024.

2014 Nathan’s finals live on ESPNews

The July 4 schedule for ESPNews shows that the Nathan’s hot dog eating contest will be shown live on that channel starting at noon. Only the men’s contest will be televised; ESPNews will show SportsCenter at 11:30. There will be three tape-delayed showings of the contest on ESPN2 on July 4, 5 and 6 and ESPN Classic will show 6 contests from previous years on July 4. The main ESPN channel has no listings of the 2014 Nathan’s contest, this would make it the first year since 2003 it was not televised on that channel.

A listing of MLE programming on ESPN networks follows:

(Nathan’s finals viewer numbers from this post)

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