A fun day was had Saturday as revelers beat the heat to indulge in all the 2019 East Texas Taco Fest had to offer.

“It’s beautiful, hot weather, but we sold a lot of beer and lot of water and a lot of soft drinks that way,” said Gai Bennett, events manager for M. Roberts Media, owner of the Marshall News Messenger.

“It’s good,” Bennett said of as she observed attendees feasting on tacos underneath the shaded tents that afternoon.

“Look at that mess tent,” said Bennett. “People are eating a lot of tacos.”

The second annual festival was organized by the Marshall News Messenger and presented by main sponsor, Patterson Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram.

The festival saw many returning attendees like Kelly LaGrone, who traveled from Carthage for the margaritas and tacos.

“I’ve been before,” LaGrone said, expounding on the good time she was having with her friends from Elysian Fields.

“There’s tacos involved, so I gotta come,” LaGrone said of what she loved about the festival. She even sported a “Tacos and Tequilas” shirt for the occasion.

The festival also attracted some new faces Saturday. Qurieda Rhoden, out of Greenwood, Louisiana, felt it was the ideal place to be after seeing a newscast about it on TV.

“I thought it was just nice for a weekend to come out,” said Rhoden.

“So far, we’re enjoying the view … the variety of music,” she said while enjoying activities from a view by the courthouse Saturday afternoon.

She said her children liked the Lucha Libre Mexican-style wrestling, featuring Big Daddy Yum Yum’s Lucha Libre All Stars. Her family enjoyed trying out all the taco vendors, too.

“The tacos are good,” she said.

Rhoden was also excited about her dog, Domino, competing in the popular Chihuahua race that afternoon.

“Although it’s hot, it’s nice,” Rhoden said of the overall event.

Vendors ranged from a variety of food to retail. Everything from homemade ice cream to Kona ice, fresh squeezed lemonade, Sugar Shack’s shaved ice, Daiquiri Express and more were available to quench the thirst.

Face paintings, animal balloons, fun tattoos, bounce houses, crafts and old-fashioned outdoor games were available for the children.

News Messenger Publisher Jerry Pye was pleased with the turnout.

“It’s a great event for downtown,” said Pye. “It’s a fun day.

“We’re glad to see the activity and the businesses doing well, and just something fun for everybody,” he said.