WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — The first ever Wichita Falls Taco Fest brought the entire community of Wichita Falls together for a great cause.

Tacos, laughter and an all round good time were the sights in downtown Wichita Falls for the city’s first Taco Fest, an event that exceeded even Mayor Stephen Santellana’s expectations.

“Man I’m feeling incredible right now. I cannot believe the response that we’ve seen from the public. I got here early this morning, I was a little worried hoping people show up but by 12:30 my worries went out the door,” Santellana said.

The event which is in response to a negative Facebook comment drew out hundreds from all over the community to come out and enjoy the festivities.

“It’s a great turnout. It is amazing how the community of Wichita Falls can get together and convert something that was really bad and really wrong into such a great environment,” Zavala Hispanic Cultural Initiative Board of Directors Keyla Ahow said.

Ahow said the event was the perfect chance to display Hispanic heritage and allow people to learn more about the culture.

“The idea for today is to leave that stereotype out. We’re all taco eaters, we can live together, we can coexist and make a good out of a bad,” Ahow said.

Mayor Santellana said the Taco Fest wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Zavala.

“All the credit goes to Zavala. We had three weeks to put this together,” Santellana said.

“We just want to bring something different we want to preserve and to maintain Hispanic culture here,” Ahow said.

After the success of the event, Mayor Santellana said the public can expect more of them in the future.

“If we could do this in three weeks what do you think it’s going to look like next year when we have the whole year to plan. You get everybody. We got old, young, men, women, brown and white. The whole world is out here today for a common cause. We all eat tacos,” Santellana said.

Turning a moment of negativity into what will be a positive tradition

If you did miss Taco Fest, the mayor said they have plans to bring it back bigger and better next year.