One of the most universal passions in our world is the love of food, and this week’s “Master of Mastication” takes that passion to the next level! With her quirky outfits, tiny stature, and an abundance of spunk, Mary Bowers has shown that in the world of competitive eating, she is the real deal.

Recently, Bowers took a few moments out of her busy schedule to explain her love of the sport, fashion, food, and more!

What’s your favorite food? Cotton candy is like eating pink fluffy clouds. Probably because it’s from heaven, which explains why it’s the best. It brings out my angelic side.

How did you get started in eating competitions? I saw a sign. In hindsight I guess it could have been in the spiritual kind of sign, but it was a sign sign. It was a poster with big letters: “Hot dog Eating Contest.” I thought a contest would be fun to watch. Instead of handing me a flyer like I was expecting, the organizers gave me an entry form. I reasoned that standing on the sidelines or playing the game both took the same amount of time, so I made my choice and have never looked back.

There seem to be many different styles of eating in competition. What is your philosophy on eating? As in eating, so it is in life. Take it one bite at a time.

Of all the events you’ve competed in, which is your favorite? I surprised my mom at the Denver Outlaws World Burrito Eating Championship, sponsored by Illegal Pete’s. She had no idea I was going to be there until she saw my face on the jumbotron and heard my name being announced by the emcee. There were even fireworks at the end of the show. It was our first really happy moment together in the months after my dad died. For us, that contest was our fresh start. I don’t know how I could ever thank people enough for what that contest meant to my mom and me. It changed our world.

Did you enjoy your time in the Palm Beaches? I could be bribed to live there if you give me enough cotton candy! Do you know anybody who might be interested in making an offer?

Can you tell us a little bit about your previous experience in competitive eating?  I’ve been eating since the day I was born, so I had years of practice before competing. Eating comes naturally to me. I’ve eaten chicken wings, bacon, potstickers, pies… I even tried to eat brain tacos. Brain tacos are the opposite of cotton candy, in my opinion.

What is the funniest thing to happen to you in your career? I always like to dress for the occasion, so when it comes to eating contests, I dress like the food. I’ve been a pie, a berry, a hotdog stand. The Buffalo Buffet Bowl was no exception. As soon as the contest was over, I rushed straight from the stadium to my friend’s wedding reception. Most ofthe guests were in suits or cocktail dresses. I was a fluffy buffalo covered in wing sauce and pizza. Isn’t that the kind of fairy tale wedding we all hope for?

What advice would you give to up and coming eaters interested in competition? Competitive eating is everything that everyone experiences in a lifetime, compressed into a few short minutes. There are moments of sweetness that are worth savoring. There are moments of humility when you bite off more than you can chew. And there are moments of challenge when you feel sick to your stomach. The thing that defines your character is whether or not you choose (chews) to press forward, no matter what the circumstances.

Chews wisely.

What’s your next eating challenge? Denver Outlaws World Burrito Eating Championship, May 27th in Denver, CO

Anything else you’d like to add? Friends and fans are invited to discover yummy recipes, play fun new games, and get a behind the scenes glimpse into my world at Join the social media conversation @EatBeMary on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest for the latest updates in foodie fashion.


Of course, the corn eating contest is not the only eating challenge in the Palm Beaches. Become a food fighter in your own right by entering the Pizza Ball Challenge at Mizner Pizzeria in Boca Raton. Do you have what it takes to make it onto the Wall of Balls?

Palm Beach Happening will be profiling one professional eater a week in advance of their “Super Bowl,” the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest in Coney Island, New York. We invite the competitors off the IFOCE to contact us  if you have the intestinal fortitude to be profiled here, as a true Master of Mastication!

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