By Eric Vo | My Record-Journal
WALLINGFORD — “A Healthy Drive” isn’t the name of a new nutrition program. It is the name of the school system’s new food truck, which is expected to begin serving food by spring, said School Superintendent Salvatore Menzo.
The truck will be run by student chefs from Lyman Hall and Sheehan high schools. The bus and equipment was purchased with a $39,900 state grant.
“It’s an ongoing process,” Menzo said. “The majority of the art work is done and all the equipment has been delivered. It’ll be installed over the next few weeks.”
The school system’s maintenance staff transformed the used, 14-passenger bus by removing the seats and side windows, said Buildings and Grounds Supervisor Marc Deptula. A sheet metal skin was added on the outside. Stainless steel was installed on the inside to satisfy health requirements. The Public Works department performed the safety inspection, including replacing worn parts.
The exterior was also decorated. Ryan Christenson, a Sheehan graduate and owner of RC Murals, volunteered his services.
“I heard about the project and got in touch with Dr. Menzo,” Christenson said. “I wanted to reach out and give back to the town. This was a fun project to work with the students on.”
Christenson painted the entire truck white, and then created a mural featuring the truck’s name, A Healthy Drive, in large, red letters, and a number of fruits and vegetables.
Equipment purchased includes a grill, charbroiler, sinks, stove and a bain-marie, which is used to keep food warm.
Menzo said he was appreciative of assistance from the community, including a parent who owned a food truck. UIC Energy, LLC donated the LED-interior lights.
“Our goal in the beginning was to get it fully functional by spring,” Menzo said. “… I know everyone is anxiously awaiting for it to be completed. We’re definitely within the timeline.”