The Food Truck Festival returns on September 25, this time at Biggs Park Mall in Lumberton
LUMBERTON – There are many changes that will set Lumberton’s second Food Truck Festival apart from the first, but what will remain the same is the eclectic variety of food that hits the palate of those who attend.
Probably the biggest change for the event scheduled to take place on September 25 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. is the location: the parking lot of the Biggs Park Mall on Elm Street in Lumberton. The event was originally scheduled to be held at the Lumberton Downtown Plaza, but city officials have canceled all mass events held on city properties, such as the Labor Day garage sale and the End of Day celebration. summer, due to health concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It was a good shot. It wasn’t something I had planned to do two weeks before the festival, but I had no choice, ”said Justin Herring, festival coordinator and owner of Top That Dessert Bar in Lumberton.
This year’s event will be “bigger and better” than the last one, which drew crowds “bigger than the population of Lumberton,” Herring said.
“I’m great, super grateful that the Biggs opened Biggs Park Mall,” Herring said. “They were great, great, super helpful.”
The mall will “absolutely” be the permanent new home for the Food Truck Festival, which Herring hopes to host in the spring and fall of each year.
Eighteen trucks are due to park at the Food Truck Festival, six more than the festival which took place on April 25 in downtown Lumberton. Among the trucks that should be part of the festival, two offer Jamaican cuisine, one Indian and one Greek. New this year: Sweet Frog, which offers frozen yogurt; xQuisito, offering a variety of international dishes; and The Pineapple Plug, which will serve all of their meals in a pineapple bowl.
“It’s a little wider than last time around,” Herring said.
Momma Nem’s, Z’s ZarBQ & Turgerz and Friendly Tacos are also expected to be at the festival.
“I don’t do the simple cabbage wraps and things like that, however, I didn’t expect so many tourists to come (at the last event). I have had people contact me from Florida. I had people from California who visited their families the same weekend so they could attend the festival. There were people from everywhere, ”Herring said.
Due to the tourist attraction, Herring felt it was his duty not only to expose Robeson County to international cuisine, but also to introduce tourists to the staples of Robeson County.
“So we’ll have a seller who will sell wraps (collard),” Herring said.
Many residents of Robeson County can become complacent and hesitate to step out of the culinary box, he said.
“It was my number one goal to bring a lot of things, to bring Indian and Japanese food other than Miyabi and Kami, to bring Venezuelan food,” Herring said. “Many foods that Robeson County has never heard of let alone tried.”
In addition to food, 30 craft vendors will be at the mall and live shows will be on stage, including artist Infinity Sioné and Jamieson performing 30-minute sets. The hip hop group BAD will headlining, with a set from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.
“I think it’s going to be awesome. It just gives a local group a chance to just publicize what they are doing. I think it’s going to be awesome, ”he said.
DJ Uneek will be playing beats throughout the afternoon.
Once again, Herring is hoping the festival will serve as a respite from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“My philosophy is that you can’t just stop your life. You just have to be careful what you are doing – keep your 6 feet, wear your mask. I think it’s important to live. You only have one life, ”he said.
Tomeka Sinclair can be contacted at [email protected] or 910-416-5865.