White Sands Missile Range’s own Jordan Armstrong, 13, was crowned the girl with the stinkiest sneakers at the 39th Odor-Eaters National Rotten Sneaker Contest at Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Times Square in New York City earlier this year.
Armstrong, who won the regional competition at WSMR in October 2013, went on to compete against six other regional finalists in New York City on March 25.
“They said mold was growing in my shoes,” Armstrong said.
Armstrong, who recently moved to Georgia with her family, was reunited with her stinky shoes in New York, and got a chance to tour the city before heading off to the competition. “It was awesome,” she said of touring some of New York’s famous sites, such as the Statue of Liberty and Rockefeller Center.
Armstrong said she slept with her shoes on to make sure they were extra sweaty. She wore them every day for two years including while volunteering at a water stop during the Bataan Memorial Death March.
Sneakers were judged on the interior and exterior conditions of the shoe, and most importantly odor by a panel of judges that included a familiar face, NASA “Master Sniffer” George Aldrich. Aldrich has been judging the regional competition at WSMR for several years and was recently featured in Stan Lee’s television show “Superhumans”.
Armstrong was the grand prize winner of $2,500. She also received an additional two-night stay in New York City, tickets to the Broadway Show “The Lion King”, the Golden Sneaker Award, and a supply of Odor-Eaters products. Her sneakers will also be enshrined in the Odor-Eaters “Hall of Fumes”.
Armstrong said she was also interviewed by several television stations. “I had to answer the same questions over and over, but I was able to give each one a different answer,” she said.
Armstrong said the competition was an unforgettable experience. She said she learned to be confident during the interview part of the competition. “Make sure you know your answers,” she said.
Julia Armstrong, her mother and a former WSMR employee, said she and her husband are very proud of Jordan’s achievement. “It was an amazing experience and we are very grateful to Odor- Eaters for the opportunity.”
Armstrong was in town to relinquish her crown as a Southern New Mexico State Fair Junior Princess.
The contest began 39 years ago as a promotion created by a Montpelier, Vermont sporting goods owner who wanted to advertise a new line of athletic shoes. At the Montpelier Department of Recreation, he discovered a photogenic pair of superbly rotten sneakers that would look great in the store ad. The recreation director seized the moment and created a new contest — the search for the best rotten sneakers! In 1988, the maker of Odor-Eaters products caught a “whiff” of this grand event, and became the official sponsor. Odor-Eaters manufactures a full line of products including insoles, sprays and powders. Each product provides superior wetness protection and now contains 30% more odor-fighters for better foot odor control.
For more information about the Odor-Eaters Rotten Sneaker Contest at WSMR visit www.odor-eaters.com.