Skip to contents
Bridgeport, Chinatown, McKinley Park

Kid Who Went Viral For Dropping Hot Dog At Sox Game Gets All-You-Can-Eat Party At Wieners Circle

A viral video showed Matthew Hoobler, 4, at an Aug. 14 game, happily munching on a dog before it slipped out of the bun. His dad said he's usually in it for the bun, anyway.

Matthew Hoobler slapped his forehead after losing his hot dog at a Sox game.
  • Credibility:

CHICAGO — A viral video showed a 4-year-old’s heart break as he dropped his hot dog at a White Sox game — but The Wieners Circle has gotten him another one.

The video showed Matthew Hoobler at an Aug. 14 game, happily munching on a dog before it slipped out of the bun. Hoobler looked back at the empty bun — and then slapped his forehead. The cute clip spread quickly on social media.

Chicago’s famous Wieners Circle invited the Hoobler family, of suburban La Grange, for an all-you-can-eat hot dog party Sunday, a spokesperson said.

Hoobler was given a new dog and taught techniques for holding it.

Rob Hoobler, Matthew’s dad, said he was surprised Matthew even asked for a hot dog in the first place at the Sox game.

“He’s a bun fan. He likes the bun more than anything. So we got him a dog, and the rest is history,” Hoobler said. “When he started chomping at the bun, there wasn’t enough to hold the dog in place.” 

And no — they did not eat the fallen hot dog, Hoobler said.

“A lot of people in the comments mentioned the five-second rule,” Hoobler said. “Maybe at home, but not at a major league stadium.”

It was Matthew’s first White Sox game — though he donned a Tigers jersey since his dad grew up in Detroit.

Credit: Courtesy of Rob Hoobler
Image captured moments before the incident.

Matthew was mainly there “for the lemonade and the Dippin’ Dots, the popcorn and a hot dog bun,” Hoobler said.

“And he’s not very interested in the viral video,” Hoobler said. “He said he wants to go to tennis next.” 

Hoobler received an avalanche of messages in the immediate aftermath of the hot dog casualty. He’s spent the week “talking to folks I haven’t seen in 10, 20 years” and watching his son star on SportsCenter. 

The Tigers invited the family to a game. But Rob Hoobler’s wife, Liz Hoobler, is a White Sox fan. They’ll let their two sons, Matthew and 2-year-old James, pick which team to root for, Hoobler said.

“Maybe they’ll end up Cubs fans,” Hoobler said.

Credit: Courtesy of Rob Hoobler
Matthew Hoobler enjoys his make-up hot dog at The Wiener’s Circle on Sunday.

But for dad, taking his sons to their first game together was a “special time.”

“It means a lot to every dad, to find out their favorite ballpark foods, get them into the smells of the game, and just see their excitement,” Hoobler said. “The ballpark offers more than just baseball for kids.

“We stayed for the rest of the game.”

Credit: Courtesy of Rob Hoobler
James Hoobler, 2, and Matthew Hoobler, 4, are children of “a house divided,” their dad said.

Subscribe to Block Club Chicago, an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods.

Click here to support Block Club with a tax-deductible donation. 

Thanks for subscribing to Block Club Chicago, an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods. Click here to support Block Club with a tax-deductible donation.

Listen to “It’s All Good: A Block Club Chicago Podcast”: