The lines were long and the appetites were big for food trucks clustered in downtown Tacoma’s Wright Park.
“We were so hungry,” said Jennevieve Schlemmer, who couldn’t hold out to wait through the line Sunday for Lumpia World’s Filipino food, and instead went to the vegan Plum Bistro stand.
Eighteen vendors from Pierce and King counties gathered for the first Metro Parks Tacoma Food Truck Fest, many serving out of the vehicles, and some from tents instead.
Schlemmer’s group was happy to see vegan options, including the yam and Mediterranean burgers they ordered.
Friend Ann Meersman said the event would benefit from more vendors.
“There could be about 10 more trucks,” she said.
Organizers hope to make the food truck gathering an annual event, and to bring food trucks to Tacoma’s parks on a more regular basis, said Phedra Redifer with Metro Parks.
The city contributed $3,000 to the event, and Metro Parks matched that, she said. The agency kept 10 percent of the vendors’ sales, which she said she expected to at least make the event break even, if not profitable.
The entertainment lineup at the park included blues rock from Six House Radius. The drummer is the dad of Metro Parks intern Jonathan Millie, who worked to organize the event.
“He was easy to get a hold of,” Millie said.
Musician Steve Stefanowicz and Tacoma’s Stephanie Anne Johnson, a contestant on television’s “The Voice” last year, were also scheduled to take the stage.
And to add a little bit of health to an event surrounding people with pizza, doughnuts and the like, they also brought in a Zumba demonstration, Millie said.
About 40 minutes into the event, he said he thought 400 to 500 people had come through so far. He expected 1,500 by the time the day was through, he said.
“You have to get here early to avoid the lines,” said Jeremy Walker of Kent. The Josefina’s Mexican burrito bowl he snarfed down was good, he said, but he regretted not getting salsa.
His ice cream dessert, he said, was excellent: “You can’t go wrong with a root beer float.”