Wichita has lots of food trucks, and you’d think they’d be pretty competitive for business.
But the truckers have always had a different vibe, fostered in part by Wichita food truck pioneer and Flying Stove co-owner Jeff Schauf’s credo that what’s good for one food truck is good for the whole scene.
Now, Schauf and the other members of Wichita’s Food Truck Coalition are putting that theory into practice. On Friday night, several trucks will get together at the downtown ICT Pop-Up Urban Park, 121 E. Douglas, to put on a benefit for another.
B.S. Sandwich Press, owned by brother-and-sister Doug and Jodi Buchanan, has been out of commission for two weeks because of an engine failure. Though the owners had their custom-built, 18-foot truck wrapped and refitted with a new kitchen just a year ago, the truck itself was not new.
From 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Flying Stove, Funky Monkey Munchies and Sunflower Espresso Wichita will be in the park serving dinner and will donate a portion of the proceeds to the B.S. Sandwich Press owners to get their engine replaced.
Schauf said he anticipates more coalition food trucks will step up and put on fundraisers, too.
“We’re all in this together,” Schauf said. “And we realize that things can go wrong at any moment. We’ve all been there.”
Jodi Buchanan said that she and her brother learned about the fundraiser by scrolling through Facebook. She was nearly moved to tears, she said.
A replacement engine is hard to find, she said, and they’re still looking for one. They hope to have the truck back on the road by Thanksgiving.
“One of the most fun things about having our food truck business has become the relationships we’ve had with the other food truckers and setting up together and helping each other out,” she said. “I don’t know if that goes on much in any other communities or groups of businesses. It’s a pretty special bond.”