A South Dakota State Fair favorite vendor will sadly be selling their last hot dogs this Labor Day weekend.

The five generational tradition of Shorty's Hot Dogs all began back in the year 1927 when a man named Clarence “Shorty” Herold opened a small stand on the midway at the South Dakota State Fair.

And nearly 100 years later, his family will be crossing the country to the SD annual state fair for the last time to serve up their breakfast, lunch, supper with of course their hot dogs.

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"It’s time for someone else to do the cooking”, said Charlie Kuhn with a wry wink, who first worked his grandfather’s stand in 1967 at age six, entrusted then with collecting the returnable pop bottles. “I’m often asked ‘why’? Why does my family go all the way to South Dakota to run a hot dog stand? The simple answer…it’s the people. We would have been one and done back in 1967 had it not been for the warm and embracing nature of the people in South Dakota. I’ve met some of my very best friends at the Fair."

Before Shorty sold hot dogs at the fair, he was a traveling salesman from Chicago.

He made the transition to being a fair staple food vendor after he couldn't get any of his customers because they were all out enjoying the SD State Fair; thus he followed his clientele to the fair by setting by an 8-foot by 8-foot stand on the midway.

Shorty first sold gum, pop, and ice cream but made the switch to selling bacon, eggs, hot dogs, and hamburgers.

Thus, a tradition was born to the crowd favorite Shorty Hot Dog alongside the highly popular hot dog eating contest that Shorty’s hosted for numerous years.

The South Dakota State Fair this year is from September 2– 6 in Huron, SD.

For more information about the South Dakota State Fair click HERE.

The information for this article was kindly provided to us via a press release from the South Dakota State Fair. 

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