Chinese cuisine

What is the truck? Food Truck Rally Returns to Utica NY



What the Truck ?, Utica’s weekly food truck rally returns this month with music, food and new activities in its sixth annual race.

After a year of the coronavirus pandemic, and with the reopening of other sites as more people are vaccinated, organizers believe this could be their biggest year yet.

“People are definitely going to feel more comfortable,” said Liz DeSanctis, director of promotions at Roser Communications, which is sponsoring the event.

This year, the weekly gatherings will feature more music, new activities and three new food trucks to try out, DeSanctis said.

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The event runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. every Tuesday from May 18 to August 31 at Canal Park at 215 Leland Ave. in northern Utica.

Last year, customers were asked to pay for food trucks directly rather than buying tickets in advance to reduce the number of interactions during the pandemic. DeSanctis said that will still be in place this year.

A man chops up food on the grill as What the Truck returned on Tuesday, June 2, 2020 for its fifth season with a slight twist to comply with social distancing measures.

Food offers

A total of 14 trucks will be at Canal Park on Tuesday evenings, including three new ones – El Jefe’s Tacos and More, featuring Mexican-style cuisine with an Italian and Puerto Rican twist; Belgian waffles and French pancakes from Oh Crepes and Waffles; and the Wok This Way Chinese Food Trailer.

Other food trucks have included staples from the event since its inception, DeSanctis said: Squeezers Lemonade; a variety of fried dishes from Mr. Z’s Street Eatz & Funnel Cakes; and ice cream and other frozen treats from Mr. Soft Serve.

Other offerings – ranging from Polish pierogis, barbecue, Greek gyroscopes – are:

  • Big Papi’s Iceys Coquito
  • BBQ for boys
  • Korean cuisine
  • Michael t’s
  • Mr. McGill’s;
  • Polish roadhouse
  • Stathis
  • The healthy choice

Cotton candy will also be provided by Gourmet Cotton Candy Company.

Signs are displayed in the grass as What the Truck returned on Tuesday, June 2, 2020 for its fifth season with a slight twist to comply with social distancing measures.

Entertainment

For the first time, every week of What the Truck? will feature a live performance, DeSanctis said. The first of 16 acts will be the artist Utica R&B Amos Donnell.

The event will also feature crafts for kids – including whiteboard coloring tables; and a “Grateful Wall” where customers can write what they are grateful for.

“It spreads a little more positivity, especially after the year we’ve had,” DeSanctis said.

H. Rose Schneider is the public safety reporter for the Observer-Dispatch. For unlimited access to his stories, please subscribe or activate your digital account today. Email Rose at [email protected].



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