Wednesday, December 17, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Yolo County Fair wraps up with record attendance — grab your last taco before gates close

TacosW

The Holy Rosary Catholic Church's taco stand uses 50 gallons of salsa and sells 44,000 tacos every year. The effort takes more than 5,000 pounds of tomatoes, 3,000 pounds of meat and 300 volunteers. Courtesy photo

By
From page A1 | August 17, 2014 |

WOODLAND — The Yolo County Fair quiets down in the heat of the day. Grandparents stretch out on benches. Girls in dresses wiggle their legs as they slurp down chocolate ice cream cones. A boy perches on a stool at a water-gun carnival game, but it’s just him so mom plays too. And the Holy Rosary Catholic Church’s taco stand only has two cashiers open instead of three.

Juanita Mendoza takes a break behind the fair’s taco headquarters, where the scent of fried tortilla and spicy salsa wafts in the breeze. Mendoza is one of the masterminds behind the fair’s favorite taco stand, though she will deny it if you ask. Ever since the church took over from the Guadalupe Society seven years ago, she and four other churchgoers have organized the preparation of 50 gallons of salsa and 44,000 tacos prepared every year.

“There’s no fair without tacos,” Mendoza joked.

The “taco committee” starts planning in January. They source the produce from local growers — most of this years tomatoes were donated by Muller farms — and the tortillas were mixed and pressed in a shop in South Sacramento.

The behemoth effort takes more than 5,000 pounds of tomatoes, 3,000 pounds of meat and 300 volunteers.

“We need more than that,” Mendoza said with a laugh.

Volunteers have two shifts: the morning shift rises at 3 a.m. to build the tacos near the church, before being trucked over to the fairgrounds where they are fried and loaded with lettuce, cheese and tomatoes.

“It’s unbelievable, it’s like a machine,” said Sharon Joyce, one of the volunteers.

“A well-oiled one,” followed up Hector Sandoval, who has been working at the taco stand since he was in high school.

Sales raise more than $40,000 in donations annually. This year, the money will go toward the construction of a new Holy Rosary church.

Mendoza said on Friday night, the lines wrapped all the way back through the picnic tables, with thousands of tacos prepped and sold. Friday made history at the fair, when both parking lots filled up and organizers closed the car gates.

“It was a once in a lifetime night, just amazing for us,” said Rita Moore, CEO of the fair.

The carnival brought back some favorites that the fair hasn’t seen for years, like Zipper and Vertigo, Moore said, and the music acts, from blues to rock ’n’ roll, have attracted roaring crowds. The Yolo County Idol competition was also popular — Julissa Perez, 8, took first place with her performance of “Mochila Azul.”

Moore cited media coverage — especially TV broadcasts — for the crowds.

“It’s like one of those teenage parties where word gets out and everybody comes,” Moore said.

Comments

comments

Elizabeth Case

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Million Cat Challenge aims to rescue shelter felines

    By Pat Bailey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Everest visit fulfills judge’s lifelong dream

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Supervisors remove Saylor from First 5 Yolo Commission

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

    GPAS and test scores up for UCD’s newest undergrads

    By Julia Ann Easley | From Page: A1

     
    Fatal Capay crash leads to driver’s arrest

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

    U.S., Cuba seek to normalize relations

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Water officials fret over rain’s effects

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

    Bob Dunning: Not enough hours in the month

    By Bob Dunning | From Page: A2

     
    Donate to STEAC at Original Steve’s

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Beer and film tour boosts bike group’s coffers

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Yolo Crisis Nursery in full swing

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

     
    Creative women share food, friendship

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Pedal around Davis on weekly bike ride

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Traditional carols service is Saturday at St. Martin’s

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Have coffee with the mayor on Friday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Stockings brighten holidays for special kids

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

    Evening tai chi classes start Jan. 6

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Overeaters get support at meetings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Fibro Friends will update their journals

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Input sought on county’s facility needs

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Name Droppers: Law prof earns peace prize for nonfiction

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5 | Gallery

    Community menorah lighting set Wednesday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    Latest immunization data shows little improvement locally

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A5

    School board will vote on repairs, new portables

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A6

     
    Study: National monument could boost local economy

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

    Parent/toddler art and music program offered

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    Libraries will be closed around the holidays

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    Cloudy — yet safe — tap water adds to negative health effects

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

     
    Round up at the registers for Patwin

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    Come Worship with Us

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

     
    .

    Forum

    This ought to teach her love

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Many thanks to The Avid Reader

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

    Language failed me that night, but not now

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A8

     
    Steve Sack cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A8

    Grand jury function clarified

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    Defying Western academic norms

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

    Boycotters are our future profs

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    .

    Sports

    UCD reveals a challenging softball schedule

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Tumey talks about state of Aggie athletics, where they’re headed

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Davis gets Rio Linda as Curry Invitational starts Thursday

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Sports briefs: Former Aggie Descalso inks deal with Colorado

    By Staff and wire reports | From Page: B8

     
    Westbrook, Durant lead Thunder past Kings

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    Some vegetables just can’t be beet

    By Julie Cross | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Rena Sylvia Smilkstein

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Wednesday, December 17, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B6