Red Dogs: Is There Any Other Color?

Hooray for Valleydale!Because it features Skeeters (“a Million dogs sold”) in our former home town of Wytheville, a friend sent along this video below about the “red hotdog corridor” that cuts a swath through southwest Virginia, across the decades, and well into central Alabama where I grew up with the Hooray for Valleydale marching band of pigs singing the praises of their mild-flavored hotdogs.

The Valleydale owner spent a small fortune on his ads (one of the first ads to air when WSLS in Roanoke started in 1952), but those munchkin voices are as clear and fresh to me as if it were yesterday. And I’ll be darned if, even before breakfast, the thought of a couple of pan-blackened dogs on a soft white-bread bun smothered in mustard and chili makes me want to skip the Bran Flakes altogether.

Matter of fact, when I’m away from the Healthy Diet Enforcement Police, I think I’ll snag me a couple of red dogs in Charlottesville. With everything. No, hold the onions; I’m on duty.

By the way, watch the twitter sidebar, where I’m more likely to report from “the field” for a few days than to the blog proper; or follow me at for all the latest.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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