Battle of the Food Trucks continues downtown Huntsville success - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Battle of the Food Trucks continues downtown Huntsville success

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Officials have focused on the city's scattering of food truck events so far as a sign of the area's desire for more activities, particularly in downtown. Officials have focused on the city's scattering of food truck events so far as a sign of the area's desire for more activities, particularly in downtown.
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HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

Huntsville planners declared continued success for the city's downtown entertainment district, and the city's long term growth prospects, with its latest food truck event the "Battle of the Food Trucks" Friday evening.

"We've been blown away. I mean, who'd have thought," exclaimed Chad Emerson, CEO of Downtown Huntsville Inc. Dozens of food vendors, food trucks and vendors without trucks, lined Fountain circle serving crowds that numbered in the thousands. 

The event brought in enthusiastic customers such as Jill Johnson of Madison, who said she routinely went to events in downtown Huntsville. "I heard about it this morning. I've been looking forward to checking it out all day long," she declared. It also enticed newcomers Reggie Moss of Huntsville. "Usually we'll go to, like, Bridge Street or something like that, but this is brand new for us," he said. "I think it's pretty great." 

Officials have focused on the city's scattering of food truck events so far as a sign of the area's desire for more activities, particularly in downtown. "Programming," explained Huntsville Communications Director Kelly Schrimsher. "We want to program our city to have the kind of quality-of-life amenities that families and young people can enjoy. The more that you have downtown, the more people will come downtown. And while they're here and they may come to the food truck rally, they may decide to stop in the art museum or they may go downtown and decide to have dinner in a sit down restaurant or they may go to a retail store."

Emerson added that the benefits of the food trucks extended even to businesses that might seem their logical competition.  "What we find is that, on these nights, both the food trucks and then the other traditional nearby restaurants they all do well, so we think Huntsville is really developing a great food culture." 

After the first event of the city's "Street Food Season" a food truck rally on April 19 brought in crowds that overwhelmed the food trucks that participated, the city's invitation went much wider, bringing in vendors from as far away as Dale's BBQ in Boaz, which had never set up shop in Huntsville before. 

"The buzz?" said owner Dale Morton. "Crowds! Good crowds, hungry people. We're glad to be here."

Copyright 2014 WAFF. All rights reserved. 

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