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12 local food businesses will compete to win three months of free rent in Parkway Plaza’s food court plus a $20,000 business investment 

September 15, 2022 (El Cajon) — Parkway Plaza regional shopping mall has announced that 12 local food businesses selected to participate in the mall’s first-ever Taste for the Space competition on October 15. They are competing for a prize package valued at over $50,000, including a $20,000 business investment and three months of free rent. 

“We are excited to have such a diverse group of businesses competing in our first-ever Taste for the Space,” said Petra Rich, Marketing and Business Development Manager. “They’re diverse in many aspects including cuisines, business models as well as ownership backgrounds. We have everything from French and vegan cuisines to Hungarian and Haitian; there are competitors that have a food truck or storefront and others who are mobile caterers. We’re also proud to say that the majority of businesses participating are minority-owned. The competition is going to be tight, so I hope everyone is ready to put their taste buds to the test.”

The food businesses chosen to vie for the top prize are: 

The event will take place at Parkway Plaza on Saturday, October 15th from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., where attendees can not only try delicious food but also enjoy fun activities for everyone.

Community members are welcome to participate in the tasting and cast their vote by purchasing a ticket on Parkway Plaza’s website (prices range from $4-$8; children under 8 are free). 

For adults 21 and over, local brewery, Societe Brewing Company, will be onsite with a beer garden selling beer and offering a range of tastings and Blue Chair Bay Rum will offer craft cocktails. For kids, the city of El Cajon Parks & Rec is sponsoring the Kids Zone, which will feature face painting, games and so much more. 

All proceeds from ticket sales and beer sales will be donated to Kitchen’s for Good. 

One winner will be chosen by a combination of votes from the community and a panel of tastemaker judges who will help decide the winner based on taste as well as overall fit for the center. 

The lineup of judges includes Chef Phillip Esteban (Open Gym, White RIce and Weapon Ramen), Christina Ng (local culinary personality and Foundation Cultivator for Berry Good Food Food), Mayor Bill Wells (City of El Cajon), Sabrina Medora (freelance writer and novelist) and a board member from Kitchens for Good.  The public can also vote for their favorite foodie find.

For more information on Taste for the Space or to buy tickets, visit

Parkway Plaza is the largest regional shopping mall in San Diego’s East County near the I-8 and Hwy 67 interchange in El Cajon. The enclosed mall has over 130 stores as well as restaurants and a cinema. To learn more, visit

The mall is operated by Pacific Retail Capital Partners (PRCP), a Southern California-based company with more than $3 billion in retail assets under management in the United States. To learn more,

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