Chacho’s Inaugural Taco Festival in St. James Park


Chacho’s is so much more than simply a Mexican restaurant. I have only visited the downtown San Jose location at 87 E. San Fernando St. once, but that was enough to know I needed to go back again. They atmosphere is great, and the staff was very professional. The taco combinations offered on the menu are unique and offer some different views of the taco. My Hawaiian taco with pineapple was excellent, but the best part was learning of the upcoming Taco Festival.

The Taco is one of my favorite food items, and it is obviously deserving of it’s own festival. What a great way to celebrate the Taco with a Taco eating competition. Throw in some live music, some artwork, a few low riders, and a margarita garden, and some hungry people. The highlight of the festival would be the Major League Eating competition and Matt Stonie’s run at his own record of 101 tacos eaten in 8 minutes. Stonie would face big competition from some of the MLE’s biggest competitors including some ladies that were ready to give him a run for his money. The lovely Mary Bowers would arrive in style in a Taco tutu that was just the hit of the party, but she was not there just to look good. Mary was there to kick some Taco ass along with Lesley Ride, Michelle Lesco, and Miki Sudo. 12 competitors together would eat Tacos for 8 minutes but only one would eat 103 to break the record. Matt Stonie was able to beat his previous mark and set a new record and it was impressive to watch him work.

I had a great time at Chacho’s 1st Annual Taco Festival, and I would like to thank some of the people that made it all work. First I would like to thank David Ocampo of Milagro Marketing for access to the event. All of the images from the Taco Festival should not be used or duplicated without permission from Milagro Marketing. I would also like to thank all of the groups that performed at the event including Camino, Cuevo Perez, Highest Intention, and the Trims. Please support these artists and check out their music. I would also like to give a huge Thank You to Gilbert from Street Low Magazine. I will be looking to work with Street Low in the future. They have a big event coming up on September 6th at the San Jose Fairgrounds to honor Sonny Madrid, the founder of Low Rider Magazine. Hanging out with Gilbert and the crew from Street Low at the Taco Festival was really cool. A huge Thank You to the competitors from Major League Eating. Lesley Ryde, Mary Bowers, Matt Stonie, Sam Barclay, Steve Hendry, Miki Sudo, Michelle Lesko, and all the others, Thank you for the awesome photos. I would like to say one last Thanks to anybody else I might have missed.

All of the images shot from Chacho’s Taco Festival were captured with my SLT-A58, and my standard 18-55 mm kit lens. I saw no need to use a zoom lens because I could just move closer, except during the eating competition when it was packed and I could not move. The festival crowd was having fun, and many people enjoyed stopping to take a picture. As a result, taking pictures in this type of setting was really fun. The images were later processed minimally in Lightroom. Please enjoy them, and look for more images from the event on the Chacho’s Taco Festival Facebook page available through Milagro Marketing.

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