UNION, NJ — Union Township hosted its weekly Food Truck Thursdays event at Biertuempfel Park on Thursday, April 13.
Since Jan. 12, various food trucks from across the U.S. have gathered at this park in Union each week to serve new and returning customers in efforts to grow their businesses. The event runs through May 25, with food trucks including Cousins Maine Lobster, Mexi-Boys, Big John’s Gourmet Burgers, Twelve Truck and Soup Phantom all making stops every Thursday.
Union Township developed the idea after the COVID-19 pandemic, collaborating with food trucks to deliver quality food and attract residents to support and boost their businesses. The township also works with local vendors such as Aunt Lullie’s and Grandma Emma’s at these events as well.
“We started working in Union Food Truck Fests in late 2021,” Peter Ferreyra, owner of The Box Mobile Catering, told LocalSource. “We have served a lot of customers from here, South Jersey and Central Jersey. The response has been amazing, so we are pushing forward.”
Many food trucks that attend this festival hope to gain enough customers to expand their businesses and purchase additional food trucks to serve more customers in different areas throughout the U.S.
“The goal is definitely to buy a second truck, possibly a third,” Ferreyra told LocalSource, “to start a small fleet and eventually transition to owning a storefront. Only time will tell, but we continue to move forward (and) with the incredible response to our food, we are not going away any time soon.”
Food trucks from Maine, Virginia, Fairfield, Bridgewater and various parts of New Jersey and the East Coast attend the festival every year to increase business beyond their town and state, to hit new markets and expand their brand. It also increases foot traffic in Union and improves the livelihood of the residents according to the township.
“This festival helps to bring in more customers from North Jersey who come to Union and experience the township,” Jeffrey Fama, owner of the Twelve Truck, told LocalSource. “I opened my food almost four years ago and was recruited by Union Township to come to the Food Truck Fests in 2020, after the pandemic, to bring comfort and support.”
Given the continued success of his food truck, Fama has ambitions of expanding to New York, Virginia and Hoboken.
“I would love to have two or three food trucks to attend the food truck festivals at Pier 13 in Hoboken, or in New York and Virginia, where I have family,” Fama said. “We get invited to other festivals, but cannot always attend, due to scheduling conflicts. My late brother grew up in Virginia Beach, so I would love to bring my business there and represent him and my family.”
The Food Truck Festival is at Biertuempfel Park, 1300 Winslow Ave., every Thursday, from 4 to 8 p.m.
Photos by Javon Ross