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Sheriff's Hold Benefit Salsa Showdown

salsa_showdown_2The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is ready for a showdown – with you. A Salsa Showdown, that is.

On Saturday, June 4, the department will host its inaugural LASD Stars & Stripes Barbeque and Salsa Showdown to benefit military, public safety & children in need.

The event is open to the public and features BBQ and salsa booths, a Kid’s Zone, food and drink vendors, live music, race car displays, games, retail vendors, military displays, LASD Department displays, and more.


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In the Kid’s Zone there will be rides, games, crafts, pony rides and a petting zoo.

Competitors from throughout the Sheriff’s Department and the Los Angeles County Fire Department will compete to show who makes the best medium, hot, or sweet salsa, who grills up the best chicken wings, and who smokes the best pork roasts and pork ribs.

Event spokesperson Tabitha Youngstrom said they created this spring event to accommodate fire department personnel who normally compete during the fall “Annual Fun in the Sun Chili Cookoff.”

“We have firemen who compete, and they came to us and said you know this would be so much better if we could do a spring event or an event early in the year because the chili cookoff happens during the fire season.”

The public can enter all cooking contests as well.

“If there’s people out there who want to compete, have great barbeque or great salsa recipes we’re more than happy to have them come and compete in the event. It’s open to the everybody, not just departmental personnel.”

However, entrants will have to bring their A-game. Youngstrom, a civilian Sheriff’s Department employee, is unequivocal when asked who the best cooks are.

“Sheriff’s,” Youngstrom insists, then chuckles.

With the purchase of a $5 “BBQ and salsa tasting card,” the public can sample the entries and vote for their favorites for the “People’s Choice Award” in each category.

In addition to the food offered by the competitors, over 35 food vendors will offer everything from ice cream to barbeque.

There will also be an Opportunity Drawing to win a Trump golf course foursome and a NASCAR family four-pack, among other prizes.

Funds raised at this event will benefit four nonprofit organizations:

•“Soldiers’ Angels”: a volunteer led nonprofit organization with hundreds of thousands of volunteers providing aid and comfort to the men and women of the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, veterans, and their families

•“Fueled by the Fallen”: assists in supporting our Military Members, Public Safety Personnel, and their families, to aid in their emotional, physical, and financial recovery needs by domestically and internationally displaying and racing their memorial race cars.

•“LASD Military Activation Committee” (MAC): develops programs that recognize and support employees and their families while activated to the military and upon return to the Sheriff’s Department.

•“999 for Kids”: formed by the Sheriff’s Department in partnership with the Department of Children and Family Services to help physically and mentally challenged children throughout Los Angeles County who are victims of the most severe cases of child abuse, neglect, and domestic violence.

The LASD Stars & Stripes Barbeque and Salsa Showdown will take place from 11 a.m to 6 p.m at the Pitchess Detention Center’s Jack Bones Equestrian Center, 26983 Tapia Canyon Road in Castaic.

To reach the Jack Bones Equestrian Center, take Interstate 5 to Castaic, Ca. and exit at Parker Road. Take Parker Road west to Castaic Road and turn right. Castaic Road will take you to Tapia Canyon Road. Turn left and continue until you reach the event.

Tickets can be purchased for food and rides. No entrance fee or cost to view displays.

There is parking for persons with disabilities and VIP’s. Parking is free. NO pets are allowed at the event due to Health Department regulations, except for service animals.

For more information, contact Tabitha Youngstrom at (661) 294-6309 or email the event committee at BBQ@LASD.org