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Juanita Aguirre, pulls out a tamale to taste test before the official tasting at the Tamale Festival on Sunday.

The first annual Tamale Festival saw success, in the eyes of its organizers, with about 500 people in attendance and seven different tamale contestants, according to one of the organizers Manuel Garcia. 

"We have a bacon festival and a rib cookoff, so why not a tamale festival," Garcia said. 

The festival, at Stramler Park, 4500 Chester Ave., had more than just tamales. Street corn and taco vendors also provided food. Live music by various bands, including Garcia's own, Los Corpenos, provided music for the entirety of the event. There were also various clothing and craft vendors at the tamale festival, some being Mary Kay and Lularoe representatives. 

Garcia said that next year he and his fellow organizers hope to see the number of attendees double in size and have more tamale vendors. 

Some of the proceeds benefited three local charities: Ronald McDonald House, Bakersfield Homeless Center and the Kern County Hispanic Scholarship Foundation.

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