The growing food truck community in Tucson has recently been busy organizing events to unite the trucks and their loyal fans. While many states have already established food truck associations to raise awareness and unite mobile vendors to look out for their interests, Tucson, Arizona has a growing food truck community but no central organization structure. That’s why events like Sunday’s food truck roundup are so important.
25 mobile vendors will be in attendance, with big names in the Tucson food truck world like the Korean-Mexican MaFooco and the renowned Planet of the Crepes. Last year a graphic designer and the director of a non-profit art movement that occupies vacant spaces in downtown Tucson created a Facebook page to organize the food trucks. They planned the first event in ten days in November 2011; though only eight trucks turned up for the event, about 300 people showed up and the food trucks all ran out of food in about two and a half hours.
Another event in early January had almost 1,000 people in attendance. In the upcoming event there is some concern about a culinary clash between vendors serving similar items. However the trucks have so far worked very well together.
Event co-founder David Aguirre said, “We have three barbecue trucks coming, but I look at the menus and they’re all different.” When the owner of a popsicle bike cart wanted to design his website, the owner of MaFooco gave him a helping hand.
The ultimate goal of these roundups is to unite the public and the mobile vendors. Most vendors are very independent, occupying select areas of the city and out of reach of many people. Smaller vendors have experienced success from word of mouth after attending these roundups, and the events help to open up vacant lots, attract musicians and other entertainment, and provide great food options.