Payson, AZ: Get ready for food truck eats

By Michele Nelson  |  Payson Roundup

Before Aug. 3 consider buying a pair of very loose-fitting pants — or maybe a muumuu. Be warned, the Third Annual Payson Food Truck Festival promises to deliver for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And don’t forget dessert.

And while you’re putting on the calories, the kids can work it off in the Payson Parks and Recreation Department’s sponsored bounce houses. If you get worn out watching them, you can always take refuge in the beer and wine garden tent for adults, with music on the stage all day. The event starts at 11 a.m. and continues until 9 p.m.

The Food Truck Festival will satisfy with 18 unique vendors on Aug. 3. Just have plenty of room to sample treats for all three meals plus dessert.

“We have 18 food trucks coming,” said Parks and Recreation Director Courtney Spawn.

Why 18?

“The first year we had 12 food trucks. Last year we had 21,” she said. “That was too much, so we kinda figured 18 is the sweet spot.”

Payson food truck fans will see a couple new vendors in the mix and a lot of return favorites.

“After this festival, (the food truck vendors) want to come back here,” she said.

With cooler weather, a grassy knoll, shade trees and entertainment, the event draws food vendors back year after year.

Yep. Food trucks have quite the following, Spawn says. “They have Facebook pages that people see where they’re at … they’re food truck groupies.”

The town has capitalized on the food truck sensation.

“We … advertise heavily with the food trucks,” she said. “The food trucks are a community in itself.”

But there’s another secret to Payson’s food truck vendor return rate.

Flavored Frost will return to freeze tongues at the 3rd Annual Food Truck festival.

“We don’t repeat vendor trucks. Every truck has a unique culinary experience,” she said.

Foodies will salivate over the Hummus Xpress, Gourmet Corned Beef, Burgers Amore, Cousins Maine Lobster, Flavored Frost, Whip It Good and more.

Four bands will entertain from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

First up, The Brothers Too, followed by Vinyl Nova starting at 2 p.m. At 4:30 p.m., Take Cover takes over and Lane Change wraps it all up from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Bands will entertain the crowd from 11:30 a.m. until 9 p.m.
Pia Wyer/Roundup

When asked for the best time to head on down to Green Valley Park for chow, Spawn said, “Usually the peak hours were around noon to 2 p.m.”

Cash is the most reliable form of payment “but cards are possible,” said Spawn.

She also suggested bringing chairs and something to provide shade.

Parking and admission are free.

Dogs are welcome, “if they are well-mannered,” but town code requires they be on a leash.

If using a canopy, stakes may not be used, so “be prepared to weigh down the canopy with sand or other weight.” Make sure to bring chairs too, because “there is no seating provided by the town.”

Spawn enjoys this event from planning to execution.

“It is fun to put on. Fun to come out and hang out in the park. It’s just a fun day to come out and relax,” she said.

For more information, visit or call 928-472-4110.