Alfred University News

Hot Dog Day welcomes founders Rick Vaughn ’73, Mark O’Meara ‘74

The hot dogs were back, and so were the people. Hundreds visited the Village of Alfred and the Alfred University campus Saturday as the community celebrated the 50th official Hot Dog Day anniversary under sunny skies following a two-year, blame-the-virus suspension of festivities.


The hot dogs were back, and so were the people. Hundreds visited the Village of Alfred and the Alfred University campus Saturday as the community celebrated the 50th official Hot Dog Day anniversary under sunny skies following a two-year, blame-the-virus suspension of festivities.

The colorful parade featured alums Eric “Rick” Vaughn ’73 and Mark O’Meara ’74, MSEd '78, who led the procession as grand marshals in a spiffy Mustang convertible. Alfred Village Mayor Becky Prophet read a proclamation from the steps of Jordan Hall thanking the two for their efforts in starting the event in 1972, and the day's festivities spread out across the Alfred University campus with games, music, vendors, and of course grilled hot dogs.

O’Meara and Vaughn recalled their idea for the event evolved as a response to an evening fracas that spilled onto Main Street from a local bar and involved students from both Alfred State College and Alfred University. Both young men decided a celebration drawing both campuses together would serve as an antidote for hostilities; they took the idea of a hot dog-selling fundraiser to the administrations of both institutions, as well as the Alfred police department and the Alfred Village Board, all of whom gave them the go-ahead.

“Turned out pretty well, didn’t it?” said O’Meara.

This year’s Hot Dog Day raised $5,600 on the Alfred University campus, according to John Lewis, Director of Student Activities. Charities benefitting from this year’s celebration include: The A. E. Crandall Hook and Ladder Company, the Box of Book Library, ARC Allegany-Steuben; Alfred Montessori School, Allegany County Mental Health Association, the Alfred Station Fire Company, and the Allegany-Cattaraugus-Chautauqua Fund for Women.

The 2022 Hot Dog Day was supported financially by the Alfred University Student Senate.

In photo above: Alfred village Mayor Becky Prophet joins Hot Dog Day founders Mark O'Meara and Eric "Rick" Vaughn, as well as undergraduate David Jensen, coordinator of the 2022 Hot Dog Day festival, on the steps of Jordan Hall following the parade that officially kicked off Hot Dog Day 2022. Prophet read a proclamation from the steps thanking O'Meara and Vaughn for starting the annual spring celebration, which raises thousands for local not-for-profit organizations.