SAN ANGELO, Texas (Concho Valley Homepage) — San Angelo residents looking to warm up and grab a bite to eat after watching the Veterans Day Parade sweep through downtown were in luck, thanks to the Second Annual Tamale Fest.

Taking place at the Pop Art Museum, located at 125 W. Twohig Ave., from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., tamales were sold — and promptly eaten — by dozens of locals. Meanwhile, music and a special performance from the Lakeview Mariachi band flooded the eventgrounds, and vendors sold food, clothing, drinks and more from their stalls.

All military members and veterans with a proper military ID received free entry to the festivities in honor of Veterans Day.

“This is just a way to give back to the community, give back to the sponsors and give back to the vendors” Luis Urteaga, one of Tamale Fest’s co-founders, said. “The whole intention is to bring everybody out here, have good food, make the vendors sell out, show them some good music, have fun with special guests and then just give back to the community.”

Special prize plaques were awarded to those with the best tamales, with a panel of judges and a majority vote from the audience earning certain tamale-makers the top spots. A tamale-eating contest was also held for participants to take part in and watch.

According to Discover San Angelo, the First Annual Tamale Fest took place on Jan. 7, 2023. It celebrated “Dia de los Reyes,” a holiday observed on Jan. 6 of each year that celebrates the biblical event of the three wise men visiting Jesus Christ.

Urteaga said that the minds behind Tamale Fest will be picking out next year’s date for the festival sometime next month. Afterward, they will set to work preparing for it.