RENO, NV - Warm weather, cold beer, live music and plenty of gourmet food helped make Reno’s first Food Truck Friday a success.
“These trucks have a great social network following,” Commissioner of Refreshment Don Darue said. “You can tell each truck has its own groupies, we here at Great Basin Brewing have an online following and the band brought people down as well.”
There were long lines for everything from hot dogs to barbecue to smoothies at the old transit center at Fourth and Center. Vendors say it’s the perfect place to hold an event like this one.
“I’m impressed, this is a great venue and I think this is really going to take off,” Island Ice truck owner Jerry Taylor said. “We all get along really well, have fun, it’s a fun business.”
But a few months ago some thought the fun was over. The city of Reno was considering rules that could have put some of these trucks out of business. Now after some compromises, it’s a collaboration.
“There was a feeling the city was working against small businesses,” Reno Code Enforcement Manager Alex Woodley said. “It was a vendor’s idea to create something here so city staff met with vendors and came up with the idea of Food Truck Fridays. I think it’s going to be a very productive thing for the downtown corridor and it’s good for the trucks because we’re getting rid of that ‘roach coach’ mentality. The city was never against these businesses, we just wanted some regulations and we love this, this is good.”
Some of the customers say they’re making this a summertime tradition.
“I think it’s awesome,” Reno native Constance Aguilar said. “I think it’s so cool when anyone turns out for a Reno event and this is like bringing the spirit of Portland or LA or Austin here, all those cities that just gather everyone in a community and have a good time, that’s what we’re doing here right now.”
Food Truck Fridays will run the first Friday of every month through October.