Best Of The Fox

Oscar Mayer Wienermobile coming to Crystal Lake

Current driver of the vehicle is a Crystal Lake native

The Oscar Mayer Wienermobile will make a stop at Mariano’s in Crystal Lake on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 16, thanks to the vehicle’s driver, a Crystal Lake native.

Brandon Mazzaferro, a 2017 graduate of Crystal Lake South High School, was chosen from 4,000 applicants to drive the company’s 27-foot vehicle last year after graduating from the University of Alabama. He will bring the Wienermobile to Mariano’s at 105 Northwest Highway from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday as part of several marketing stops in the Chicago area this week.

“They usually try to get each of the Wienermobile drivers back to their hometown, if possible,” said Mazzaferro, whose official job title is hotdogger.

Brandon Mazzaferro, of Crystal Lake, is pictured as the driver of the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile with Parker the Snow Dog, honorary Mayor of Georgetown, Colorado.

The job includes taking the vehicle to events around the country to market Oscar Mayer hot dogs, but also create memories for people.

“Everyone seems to have some kind of magical connection,” he said.

The Wienermobile was invented in 1936 during the Great Depression to help bring a smile to people during a difficult time in the nation’s history, Mazzaferro said. He said he feels honored to be a part of that mission today, as the nation deals with the difficulty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mazzaferro has taken the vehicle from Des Moines to Chicago for marketing stops in the suburbs.

The last hotdogger from McHenry County was Woodstock native Katie Ferguson, who visited Woodstock and Crystal Lake in January 2021.

Ben Szalinski

Ben Szalinski

Ben is a former Northwest Herald who reported on local news in Harvard, Marengo, Huntley and Lake in the Hills along with the McHenry County Board. He graduated from the University of Illinois Springfield Public Affairs Reporting program in 2021. Ben is originally from Mundelein.