AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — A local food truck park is destroyed after hurricane-force winds hit the area on Feb. 26. Now, the owner is asking for help from the community to put it back together.
“So we opened in 2018 and operated successfully until COVID shut us down. We had anticipated reopening this April to coincide with the baseball stadium’s new season. But as you can see, Feb. 26, we had that big windstorm, [it] utterly destroyed my park,” said Ben King, the owner-operator of the Downtown Amarillo Food Truck Park, as he gestured to the destruction behind him.
Now they are switching gears and asking for community donations.
“We are asking for around $150,000, part of it for the resurfacing, part of it for the reinstallation of the plugs for the food trucks, the stands for the vendors to set up little storage areas,” he said. “We’re also gonna have a bandstand, a little mini arcade, a pavilion, and a pergola.”
King said they will do a naming rights drive of sorts to raise the funds, where some donors will get plaques and name recognition.
“Hopefully they’ll have the pride for many years of being able to point to it and say, like ‘I helped produce helped contribute to getting this whole sort of free market enterprise underway.'”
When they rebuild, King said they plan to double the size, providing a space for up to 10 food trucks and 30 vendors to sell goods.
“Food trucks allow for small business people to have a chance to get into the game and a lot of food trucks that are successful go on to become actual restaurants. They also employ people and pay taxes and some of them choose to use local goods like mine, I produce meat and vegetables,” said Justin Trammell, farm owner at Tir Bluen. “If they’re not even using mine, at the very least there are people there that I can set up and sell my goods to.
He continued, “For anybody that produces food in this area, there’s generally only one season that’s your farmers market season, which is generally in the warmer months. What Ben is trying to do there with the food truck Park is something that would be year-round.”
King said this project is his way of revitalizing his small part of downtown.
“By the time it’s all over, I hope to have like 100 small businesses that have gotten their start here and hopefully be the sort of launchpad for their own individual success,” said King.
To learn more about the food truck park, click here to see their Instagram page.