A 37-year-old Kentucky man smoked a pipe of 3.3 grams of tobacco for 71 minutes and 30 seconds to win the Gaslight Festival Pipe Smoking Contest.
Coy Howard, 37, of Springfield, KY., smoked the pipe with a single light longest to best five competitors Sunday at the annual contest in Jeffersontown, the Louisville, KY.
Gorden Vogel, 71, took second place by making his pipe last 70 minutes and 45 seconds on a single light.
The Gaslight pipe-smoking contest took place on Sunday, Sept. 20 in Jeffersontown, Kentucky with six contestants.
Four younger men joined two old-timers in puffing and eyeing each other’s pipes under the columned portico that shelters Jeffersontown City Hall, each nursing 3.3 grams of tobacco, trying for the longest time on just one light.
Under the watchful eyes of a judge holding a stopwatch, the winner, Coy Howard, 37, coaxed his bowl of burley and vanilla-flavored Virginia tobacco to burn 71 minutes, 30 seconds. He snuffed out Gorden Vogel, age 71, who lasted 70 minutes, 45 seconds.
“I pray for two things,” said Howard, a factory worker from Springfield, Ky. “That mine does not go out and others’ do.”
Souvenir pins from many past pipe smoking competitions studded the red tobacco pouch on the lap of Griffin, a competitive puffer since 1984.
His collection included pins from pipe-smoking marathons at the Ham Days celebration in Lebanon, Ky.; the Steamboat Days Festival in Jeffersonville, Ind.; and the Kentucky State Fair.
This year, the International Association of Pipe Smokers will hold its 61st world championships near its headquarters in Mount Pleasant, Mich.
The association’s Web site lists Internet links to seven pipe-smoking clubs nationwide, including the Kentuckiana Pipe Smokers Club based at Kremer’s Smoke Shoppe in downtown Louisville.
Before the contest began, the owner of Kremer’s shouted to be heard over the keyboard and drums of a six-man gospel combo playing for festival passers-by on Watterson Trail.
This was the second year Kempf, 27, who also works as a clerk at a liquor store on Bardstown Road, competed in the pipe-smoking contest with his friend Jordan Humbert, 26, a musician.
Nate Keller, 18, said he took up pipe smoking under a tree in his Jeffersontown backyard last year to ease nerves jangled by his job setting bowling pins at King Pin Lanes on Taylorsville Road.
“After you have had a harsh day, it puts you in a mellow mind,” Keller said.
Kremer’s Smoke Shoppe