It’s an undeniable fact that kids have stinky feet.
But 12-year-old Connor Slocombe can lay claim to having the smelliest sneakers in the nation. Slocombe, who lives in Eagle River, Alaska, was the winner of the 2017 National Odor-Eaters Rotten Sneaker Contest, out-stinking six other finalists. The event was held yesterday at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in New York.
Following a series of regional contests held around the country, the finalists gathered to vie for the national title. Each child’s pair of shoes was judged according to three criteria: odor, condition and the child’s verbal description of why their sneakers are the stinkiest. The panel of judges included George Aldrich, a chemical specialist for NASA space missions; Rachel Herz, an expert and author on the psychology of smell; and WPIX 11 TV reporter Greg Mocker.
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Slocombe’s New Balance 550 kicks — so trashed that his toes poked through the front — beat out all the others. Slocombe was awarded the Golden Sneaker trophy, along with $2,500 — which he’ll hopefully put toward a new pair of shoes. He also received an additional two-night stay in New York to attend a Broadway show and a supply of Odor-Eaters products. His foul-smelling sneakers will be enshrined in the Odor-Eaters “Hall of Fumes.”
Open to children ages 5 to 15, the Rotten Sneaker Contest first began in 1974 as a promotion created by a Montpelier, Vt., sporting goods store owner, who was looking for a creative way to advertise a new line of athletic shoes. Odor-Eaters started sponsoring the competition in 1988 and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! began hosting the event in 2014.