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40,000 people attend 28th annual California Lemon Festival, organizers say

For some, the California Lemon Festival is all about stuffing their faces with lemon meringue pie.

“It feels like stuffing my face into a pillow,” said 6-year old Daysie Bell, who won the pie-eating contest.

Going on its 28th year, the festival is said to be the biggest celebration of its kind on the Goleta coast.

“It’s so awesome because it’s a family friendly event. It’s part of our heritage and history. Yet nothing like this exists,” said Don Gilman who has been attending the festival nearly all his life.

Kelly Hoover of the City of Goleta served as one of the judges for the pie eating contest.

She describes the festival as “magical.”

“I don’t think I’ve laughed so hard. It was just funny watching pie all over everyone’s faces,” Hoover said.

This year, an estimated 40,000 people came to the family fun festival.

As a tribute to the community’s leading lemon-growing region, all the money raised will go to the Goleta Chamber of Commerce, and other local nonprofits.

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