Clinton, NC: Food truck event growing

By Reporter  |  The Sampson Independent

Sampson Community College continued one of the county’s newest traditions this week as the campus hosted the 2019 Food Truck Rodeo. The college, in partnership with the Clinton-Sampson Chamber of Commerce, teamed up for the event for the third year in a row.

“This was started to promote small businesses in the community,” says Bart Rice, director of the Small Business Center at SCC. “This is an effort to get their names out there and to connect these businesses. This is a networking event, not only between small business owners but also from the customers to the food truck vendors.”

Food truck rodeo events began gaining popularity across the country more than ten years ago. The purpose of the event was simple. Organizers want to offer a new, fun and adventurous event to Sampson County with hopes of cultivating a community atmosphere that brings people together. The hope is that the event will grow in popularity and become a regular staple in Sampson County.

The event has grown, and this year featured seven local food trucks, including Southern Smoke BBQ, which is well known around the region for awesome BBQ and southern sides. Somethin’ Good is owned by Amanda Ezzell of Ezzell’s Catering from Duplin County. They are also well known in the area. The Little Chef is also from Duplin County, but well known around Clinton as they participate in many events at Timberlake Golf Club. Taqueria Tierra Caliente Mexican Food Truck (also known as TT Caliente) is from Duplin and provided authentic Mexican cuisine. Dairy Queen of Clinton, another homegrown food truck from Sampson County offered their traditional Dairy Queen desserts. New to the rodeo this year was Frank’s Seafood and Anna Coffee, both of which had long lines at their windows as well.

“Make no mistake, this is also an attempt to have new food truck vendors join the Chamber of Commerce, so they too can take advantage of the services they offer,” adds Rice. “This will get their name out in the community and hopefully direct more customers and more sales on top of what they may already enjoy. This is our third year and our focus now is making it bigger and better each time for everyone.”

Any food trucks wishing to participate in future events or to find out more information about it should contact the Chamber of Commerce at 910-592-6177 to set up a tasting.

Chamber, college team to showcase local eateries