SAN ANTONIO -

When you visit the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo one of the most popular eateries is the Van De Walle Corral.

The Van De Walle’s have been part of the rodeo since the mid 1980s specializing in beef and chicken fajitas.

When they first got involved they wanted to try a new marinade for the meat. They got to try it out, but only if the proceeds went to scholarships.

It was a win, win and is still a victory to this this day. The first year they raised $12,000 for scholarships.

They started out cooking about 700 pounds of meat, now they are at 11 tons of beef and chicken each year but overall that number in not the important one.

“More importantly how many kids we have sent to college,” said Elaine Van De Walle Thompson, vice president of the executive committee. “We have put our heart and soul into this.”

It shows. Over the years they have raised some $3 million while adding some barbeque dishes to the menu.

The main reason they can do so much for the kids is all the work is done by about 800 volunteers every year, mostly from the corporate world.

“So many jobs that need to be done they come in and they help us out,” said Jenesee Beaudoin, chairman of the Fajita Corral Committee.

The Van De Walle Corral has gotten so big, they became their own committee back in 2006. They continue to grow in volunteer size, money raised, and the number of food items the sell, but one thing is constant, the fajitas.

“Best in town,” said Will Conigan.