IRVINE : Thousands Take a Taste of O.C.

Lured by siren songs and smells, thousands of Orange County residents turned out Sunday for the final day of "A Taste of Orange County," a three-day fete of food and music at the Irvine Spectrum.

All admission proceeds from the event and part of the restaurant sales went to a Los Angeles Times Fund that supports a summer camp and other projects for underprivileged youngsters.

The event marked the third go-round for "A Taste of Orange County." It made its debut in 1989 at the site of the defunct Lion Country Safari but moved to the Irvine Spectrum last year.

For each day of this year's event, four semi-trailers of food were hauled in. More than 700 volunteers helped keep things running smoothly.

All three days featured delicacies from about 30 local restaurants, everything from hot dogs, pizza, Tex-Mex dishes and apple pie to ethnic cuisines from Indonesia, Thailand and Lebanon.

Several county chefs also demonstrated their ice-carving skills and showed curious spectators how they prepare their specialties. Visitors washed down all the food with a wide slate of beverages, including wine, beer, bottled water and cappuccino.

On the music side, the highlight came Saturday with a KLON Jazz Festival. Several rock bands also made an appearance.

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