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Bacon Nation 

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I am proud to announce that this year SLO will finally be put on the map. We have been gifted endless buckets of fat drippings and an everlasting aroma of maple. Someone has come to our bacon call.

Jazmyn Strickland, organizer of the 2013 SLO Bacon Fest, saw an opportunity to raise money and awareness in the name of child hunger while filling the bellies of adults ready to pig out.

“Who doesn’t love bacon?” Strickland said—vegetarians and vegans aside. “It’s a quintessential American food with such versatility that is has to be celebrated.”

By purchasing a $35 ticket, guests 21 and older are invited to enjoy unlimited bacon creations from local businesses and unlimited drink from local breweries and wineries to support Ward House Charities’ afterschool meal programs in schools around the county, starting in Nipomo and expanding. The event will be held at the Madonna Inn Expo on Saturday, Nov. 23, from noon to 3 p.m., providing contests and live entertainment.

Only those noble enough to handle the ultimate challenge will be considered to steal the throne as the biggest pig in all the land. In the Bacon Eating Contest, the first person to eat three pounds of bacon is the winner. Think that’s a challenge? Just to have the honor of consuming such a high quantity of the world’s most delicious food, participants are required to raise $50 or sell five event tickets. The winner receives a one-year supply of the good stuff, plus four VIP tickets to next year’s event, and is elected an official spokesperson for SLO Bacon Week. What a squeal!

More a hero than Miss America, the sought-after Bacon Queen title has contestants jumping through pigpens. Hopeful title-holders will be judged in four areas: knowledge of bacon American culture, bacon outfit design, answering a bacon question, and, of course, a bacon talent.

“Not everyone has a Bacon Queen pageant or runs it the way ours will be,” Strickland said. “But we thought it would be fun.”

All bacon princesses must raise $50 or sell five tickets to the event. Bacon Queen SLO will receive queen accessories, a bouquet of beautiful bacon roses, and four VIP tickets to 2014 SLO Bacon Fest.

All of the common folk will be able to enjoy bacon dishes from local restaurants, take a swig of bacon vodka, and even end with dessert from Lickety Split Cupcakes. All with a happy heart and stomach stuffed like a hog.

Help fill kids’ bellies by stuffing your own. Tickets cost $40 at the door, so make sure to get a presale ticket before they’re all gobbled up. For more information, visit


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