First Friday brings the second ever Dayton Food Truck Rally to downtown! Last month six trucks lined up at Riverscape and on a dreary day that rained off an on all day, no one was sure what to expect. The food truck operators weren’t sure whether to cancel due to weather, or show up, but how many to prep for? What they found was an overwhelming turnout, where guests lined up in the rain by the hundreds! Lines reached from the streets almost back to the pavilion. The turn out was huge and for some of the trucks it was more than they had on hand. What they learned is that Dayton loves street food!
So this First Friday there will be a dozen trucks lined up, more food prepped and Synergy Incubators has been working with the Miami Valley Mobile Food Association to help the truck entrepreneurs to work on efficiency, and quicker customer service! For many of these local entrepreneurs, they are learning as they go. And they are not the only ones learning- existing local ordinances, laws and regulations pertaining to food service were written decades ago, long before anyone had ever heard of a food truck. Most cities and counties do not even acknowledge the existence of “food truck” in their code, which poses challenges, permitting delays and lack of consistent information for the modern day food truck warrior. By forming the formal association (MVMFA) they can work together to help navigate and change the laws that allow these pioneers to bring food to underserved areas of town. They are also educating the public, mobile food now covers so much more than just a hot dog cart with an umbrella (speaking of which Craig’s Pesto Hot Dogs serves up a yummy Reuben Dog). A colorful, gleaming, fully equipped food truck can cost upwards of $120,000. Add to that the graphics wrap, menu development, gas, maintenance, insurance, truck storage, permitting fees, biz licenses and suddenly, what some may consider a weekend hobby, is now a full-on investment. And yes they do have to pay sale tax!
These restaurants on wheels are creating a whole new business niche, serving up gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, locally sourced foods and gourmet cupcakes. Many of them aspire to grow into bricks and mortar eateries . Being mobile allows them to research locations that work best for their particular food offerings. Many of the trucks have constantly changing menus. What they all have in common is they love to serve up food and they thrive on the challenges of each outing.
Tonight’s event with Miami Jacobs College is Mix 107.7’s Pre-Summer Fest Party, featuring a live band, and ticket giveaways to the June 15th Sheryl Crow show at Fraze Pavillion. The party will begin at 6pm at 110 North Patterson, and is scheduled to run until 10pm or until the food runs out!
Trucks You’ll Probably See Tonight: