Friday, June 3, 2016

Friday Food Trucks Inspire Spring Woods High Community

It began a year ago with a Kona Ice shaved ice and ice cream truck. By late spring, the 16 food trucks parked in front of Spring Woods High School had gained loyal followings of students, teachers, parents and community residents.

Originally called Mega Lunch, the irregular Friday food truck events held during a lunch hour at the campus located at Gessner and Tiger Trail offer up tasty options, ranging from Texas barbecue and soul food to Cajun fare and hot Mexican plates.

Food Truck Friday, as the “foodapaloozas” may be best known, were held several months in fall 2015, and then on a more regular basis during spring months.

These PTA-sponsored food fairs also ranked as one of the year’s most talked about Spring Woods neighborhood gatherings. By early April, food truck revenues raised $4,000 for Spring Woods High scholarships, too, a positive all around. Ten percent of proceeds support campus PTA scholarships.

“It’s been a good thing for the Spring Woods High PTA and for the kids. We were willing to be open to new ideas, and we’re still learning. I would like to do this for every month of the year, and even do it on Saturdays,” says Trudy Singleton, PTA vice president for fundraising at Spring Woods.

“This Friday event has built a connection within our whole community – with our PTA parents, with students, with neighboring schools and residents. That has been the biggest reward – we can all be together as a community, and that is huge,” said high school PTA President Theresa Rivera.

Rivera, Singleton and other PTA leaders did a huge amount of work to move Food Truck Fridays from a shaved ice stand, and then a few food trucks, to the full circle scene outside the high school this spring.

They gained school principal and district approvals. Then last summer, they began working on food permits, insurance and a number of other requirements, including volunteer staffing.

When long student lines formed for seven food trucks, PTA volunteers reached out and marketed the event more, boosting participation to almost a dozen food trucks, which made the student lunch hour run more smoothly.  

For many, there’s an equal enjoyment in monthly lunches that bring together local businesses and sponsors with campus and community residents.

By April, Spring Woods High PTA had gained event sponsorships from Central Bank, Echo Lane Animal Clinic, J. Carter Breed Properties and Bernstein Realty Inc., among others.


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