I truly dread food truck events when it is over 100 degrees every food truck event ends with a list of things that could be done to improve the next event but when it is over 100 degrees, nothing else matters except that it was 100-plus degrees. Saturday night removed all dread and proved that no matter the temperature, some things are just going to be right the first time.
Everything came together wonderfully with the opening of Dallas' first food truck park, Cedars Food Park at Heritage Village. It was 106 degrees when I walked in to the park, it was 99 degrees when I walked out 3 1/2 hours later, and I cant offer one thing that could be improved upon.
Edited to add that several of my followers have commented on the parking situation. While I did not experience problems, I am being told that as more people arrived there was confusion about where to find parking and how to navigate the rows, with cars driving in all directions, through a grassy area adjoining the park. I don't know how long this problem existed; when I left, there was a security officer directing traffic out of that field.
There were a total of 18 trucks: Rock & Roll Tacos, Cafe Con Leche, Ssahm, Jack's Chowhound, Four Seasons, Three Lions, Nammi, Coolhaus, Gandolfo's, Rockstar Bakery, Ruthie's Rolling Cafe, Good Karma Kitchen, Crazy Fish, Cajun Tailgators, The Butcher's Son, Rockn Rick's, Enticed and Free Wheel'n Cafe lined up around the center gazebo of the park. The Heritage Village buildings were open -- for tours, air-conditioned seating, or sales from Deep Ellum Brewing, Dude, Sweet Chocolate and Uptown Popcorn. Lines for food at the trucks were steady all night but rarely overwhelming. The trucks, having gotten used to these large-scale events, moved the lines well and to my knowledge none had to close early because of a sell-out, although several were getting nervous. In fact, the only places where lines were excessively long were for beer.
The crowds were amazing. Families turned out with chairs and blankets, visiting while the kids enjoyed dancing to live music, couples came out for date night and groups of friends were out, usually with dogs in tow, sharing food and enjoying the outdoors. If seating on the grass was not someone's cup of tea they had plenty of options seating in the open area pavilion, tables outside or inside one of the buildings, which had air conditioning.
For months, the food truck owners and food truck followers have been asking for a Dallas food truck park and Saturday, they got it. Starting this week, the park will have four trucks serving lunch on Wednesdays through Fridays, and dinner on Thursdays starting August 16. The park organizers have made it clear that this is still a "pop-up" food park and is still in the trial stages. If opening night is any indication, the park is here to stay.