Construction casualty: Food truck visits to city hall reduced to three this summer
May 29, 2019 03:30PM
By Carl Fauver
Weekly food truck visits to Taylorsville City Hall were a hit last summer, but construction is forcing fewer visits this year. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)
By Carl Fauver | [email protected]
The launch of a new Taylorsville tradition last summer proved to be a Saturday night success, from Memorial Day weekend into the fall, when food trucks parked outside city hall each week, providing hundreds of people with a variety of culinary options.
But the grass southeast of City Hall, used as a huge picnic area on those nights a year ago, is now fenced off and filled with huge equipment and even larger mounds of dirt.
After considering a variety of options, including relocating the weekly food truck nights to an alternate Taylorsville location, elected officials decided to instead limit their visits to just three times this summer.
“The food trucks were very popular last summer, and we hated to reduce their visits this year,” Mayor Kristie Overson said. “But with all the construction going on — and the limited parking — we decided to just host the trucks on the three nights we present free summer outdoor movies. It will still be crowded, and we will have to move the movie screen from where it was last year, but at least we will be keeping both traditions (the trucks and the movies) going.”
Initially, there had been talk of possibly moving the food truck venue to Taylorsville Park (4700 South Redwood Road). But Overson believes it’s better to keep the event outside city hall, even though fewer nights are available.
“We want to establish City Hall as our community gathering place, particularly after the arts center is completed,” Overson said. “After considering it, we decided it would be confusing to move it to a completely different place and then move it back again next year.”
The Saturday nights for free movies and the food truck visits will be July 13, July 27 and Aug. 10.
The movie showings were brought back from the dead last summer by the city’s Parks & Recreation Committee. Vice Chair Meredith Harker is the city council’s liaison to the committee.
“We’re shifting the movie screen this summer to the grassy area between City Hall and the fire station,” Harker said. “The viewing might even be a little better there because the grass is sloped a bit, creating a kind of theater seating. The food trucks were a fun part of our movie nights last year, and I’m glad they will be back.”
In the meantime, residents who fell in love with the food truck culinary selection last summer have a good news–bad news option this year. The good news is, food trucks are now serving both lunch and dinner five days a week at a reliable location, complete with indoor climate-controlled seating. The bad news is, The Hub Food Truck Park is 10 miles southeast of Taylorsville City Hall, at 982 West 10600 South in South Jordan.
“We’re sad we won’t be back in Taylorsville every week like last year, because I think it was a success for the city, and I know it was for our food vendors,” said Food Truck League Founder and President Taylor Harris. “But we certainly understand the problem due to construction. We’re anxious to resume a weekly summer schedule as soon as the (arts center) construction is completed, hopefully next year.”
As an alternative, Harris said everyone’s favorite food items from last summer are still available at their new, year-round location.
“We first tried to open The Hub last winter, but it didn’t do well, even though we do have a heated building for indoor seating,” Harris added. “But now it’s up and running well.”
The Hub Food Truck Park is open Tuesdays through Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for lunch and 5 to 9 p.m. for dinner. More information and a daily schedule of which trucks are serving is available at Thefoodtruckleague.com.
“This is our fifth year of operation, and the Food Truck League has grown each year,” Harris said. “We now have four full-time employees and 12 part-timers. Our trucks cater special events and provide food at company parties and luncheons. It has taken off well.”
“We’re disappointed to reduce the number of food truck visits this year because they were very popular, but it was a safety issue,” Overson said. “If construction is far enough along (on the Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center) next year, we’ll increase the schedule again.”
Harris said the Food Truck League has already committed to Taylorsville officials; the city will be able to keep its popular Saturday nights for the culinary vendor visits a year from now.