Tacos were being grilled while folks lined the streets of downtown Marysville to celebrate the second annual Yuba-Sutter Taco Festival.
Last year’s festival was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Olga Rodriguez, director of marketing at Alma Festivals Entertainment, said people returned to enjoy it once again on Saturday.
Rodriguez said the turnout was much better than the organizers originally expected.
“There were several hundred (people here) by 11 a.m.,” Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez and Alma West designed the festival to look like a day out in Tijuana. Taco trucks, mostly coming from Sacramento and the Yuba-Sutter area, lined D and Third streets, serving fresh, off-the-grill street tacos, alongside other traditional Mexican menu items.
“If you were going to Mexico, what would you want to eat?” Rodriguez asked.
The answer was street tacos served with soft flour and corn tortillas and a variety of meat, Rodriguez said.
She said there was also plenty of entertainment for adults and children during the day, including a children’s zone with a couple of bounce houses and a petting zoo with miniature horses from Stueve Farms, The Pony Place.
In addition, Rodriguez said there was a classic car show, a taco eating contest and live music throughout the day.
Rodriguez hopes to expand the festival next year. One of the ideas she is pondering includes a vegan zone adding to an already vast selection of meats served on the taco trucks.
“We want to feed people and we want to entertain them,” Rodriguez said.
Many of the patrons who attended thought the return of the taco festival was a success.
Marysville resident Alyssa Myers and her friend, Colin Laubach, of Sacramento, attended the event on Saturday. They devoured their plates and gave a thumbs up.
Laubach liked that the festival provided for a variety of different age groups, while Myers said it was nice to see activity in downtown Marysville once again.
After more than a year of large gatherings like the taco festival not taking place due to public health concerns with COVID-19, the region is beginning to find a way to bring back big events, which helps local businesses that are struggling due to the pandemic.
Sinil Kang, of Yuba City, said at some point “we need to get back to our lives.”
While it’s important to keep people safe, Chanta Apodaca said it’s good to see the community becoming a fun place to hang out.
Kang and Apodaca, owners of 2 Bits Express inside the Caltrans District 3 headquarters, are considering adding to the taco truck menu by serving their own tacos at next year’s festival.
Kang said that he may work with the city to bring 2 Bits Express to D Street.
“I am hoping it turns into a bigger (event) with more tacos,” Kang said.