Wausau, WI: Food truck craze hits central Wisconsin

By Holly Chilsen  |  WSAW.com

WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) — If you’re looking to enjoy a summer night with the family, surrounded by some tasty summertime food, look no further than the parking lot of Wausau Pickers.

“What we’re doing today is a food truck rally along with Wausau Pickers flea market,” said Bruce Bartus, owner of Cow Curds of Wisconsin.

Bartus is the man behind the cow truck, making a Wisconsin deep-fried favorite: cheese curds.

Bartus says the food truck craze started a few years ago, and Wausau joined the movement last year. Thursday was the kickoff event for the summer.

“It is nice having something you see in the big cities, you know, come to Wausau,” said Bartus.

This year, there are more trucks and more variety, up to nine in fact. They’re dishing out their signature cuisines abd sweet treats.

Arielle Vang of Wausau enjoyed the food truck rally with her family.

“Cotton candy!” Vang screamed and smiled when asked what she got to eat.

“We have Asian, cheese curds, standard hamburgers, brats, hot dogs, kettle corn and you know, different kind of foods for people to try and enjoy,” added Bartus.

Whether for the deals at the flea market, the smell of delicious food or both, it’s attracting hundreds of people from near and far to get a bite out of the fast-growing trend.

“Well we’ve bought from four already, so it’s nice that there’s a variety here, everything to try,” said Lacey Savaske-Simonsmeier of Wausau.

Landon Laffin, also of Wausau, tried a spicy lemon chicken dish and fish tacos, while enjoying the antiques at the flea market.

“I think it’s awesome, and we’re blessed with the beautiful day and there’s a diversity of everyone who lives in our town,” Laffin said.

It’s also putting Wausau on the map.

“Through advertising and social media, it’s getting out and bringing people from out of the area, which helps Wausau because they come here, they enjoy Wausau Pickers, the food rally, then do other local shopping,” Bartus said.

“It’s pretty cool,” Vang smiled.

The food truck rally happens every third Thursday of the month throughout the summer. Just go to the Wausau Pickers lot at 801 Genrich Street in Wausau from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.

This is the list of confirmed vendors that will be out there:

Asian St. Food
Curds of Wisconsin
East Meets West
Hanuman Express
Snow 2 Go
Urban Street Bistro

Organizers say there are possibly more to come!