Packed crowd gathers at Pioneer Village for Taco and Beer Festival

Bryana Lozoya, Reporter


Bryana Lozoya
Crowd waits in line for tacos at The Original Chicken and Rice as The Taco Cartel pulls in.

The 2018 Taco and Beer Festival was held in the grassy area at the Kern County Museum on Sept. 14 and 15. Prices for one day ranged from $29 for presale to $45 for general admission.

Some participating taco vendors were The Original Chicken and Rice Company, Oaxaca On Wheels Food Truck, Straight Outta the Grill, and The Taco Cartel. Breweries such as Temblor Brewing, Lagunitas, Ace Cider, Fig Mtn Brew, and Tap Truck also participated.

The event started off with a good turnout of attendees, but some left the first day feeling a bit disappointed.

The venue was jammed packed with people the very first day and festival goer Jennifer Reed said that the lines were long, and the service was too slow. Robert Johnson III and his wife NaTesha Johnson, who went for the first time, also said that the lines were too long.

Bryana Lozoya
People wait in various lines for tacos and beer.

“It was intimidating to walk in and don’t know where to go,” Robert said when talking about figuring out where lines started and ended.

Robert and NaTesha thought that the Kern Museum is a great venue for events but felt that this event needed a bigger venue to fit for the number of people that showed up for the festival.

Reed thought that the festival oversold tickets for the number of vendors they had and mentioned how they should have created a list of what days the vendors were planning to appear, as some of the vendors she was expecting were not there during the time she spent at the festival.

Despite the chaotic lines both Reed and the Johnsons enjoyed the time they had with the people they went with and some of the qualities the festival had.

Reed enjoyed trying the different foods and beers, naming the pineapple cider from Ace Cider as her favorite brew and a falafel taco from The Original Chicken and Rice Company as her favorite taco.

Bryana Lozoya
Kim Hood and Stacy Wong from the Jerky Hut at the 2018 Taco and Beer Festival.

The Johnsons thought that the staff was kind, the weather pleasant, and the event visually organized (despite the long lines) saying that having the beer booths along one side of the field and the taco trucks on the other side was a good idea.

NaTesha noted how she thought the beer side of the event was amazing because lines went faster.

She also liked how there were good restroom accommodations and easy entry into the event.

The beer booths were something Robert liked, he especially liked the brews from Local Craft Brew Tehachapi.

Some good came out of the 2018 Taco and Beer Festival despite some of its shortcomings.

Bryana Lozoya
Taco and Beer Fest welcome banner along with vendor banners with the Kern County Museum’s clock tower in the background.