Two years after a crowd of more than 1,000 people swarmed a food truck event on the corner of 14th Street and Santa Monica Boulevard, the trucks returned to the lot Wednesday afternoon to serve less than 100 customers.
Turnout was meager at the first day of "Hump Day Food Trucks," which will occur every Wednesday, as the name suggests. At 6:30 p.m., about a dozen people milled around the four food trucks. But organizer Brian Spire said he is confident that the event—the first all-day private food truck lot in Santa Monica—just needs to time to get over its first day slump.
"First days are always hard, we just have to get the word out," Spire said.
A food truck event hosted at the same location drew thousands of Angeleno foodies in 2010, but was shut down because of permit violations.
"Two years ago, food trucks were random pop-ups. You'd text you're friends and say 'hey come to this place.' They're more common now, but the regularity of something like this is still unique," Spire said.
A resident of Santa Monica for 25 years, Spire said he thought the area was the perfect place to host the event, and decided to revive it after acquiring the proper permits from the city.
Although the lot itself does not have seating, , a music venue located across the street from the lot, offers free seating for foodies who purchase a drink from the club. Spire said he hopes to work with the venue to provide music and entertainment at future events.
Wednesday's food trucks included Gringo's Tacos, the Fry Girl, Me So Hungry and Ragin Cajun. When asked what kind of trucks to expect in the weeks to come, Spire rattled off a variety of ethnic cuisines (Filipino, Korean and Vietnamese, to name a few), funky eats from trucks Potato Tornado and Trailer Park Truck, as well as big name trucks Border Grill and The Grilled Cheese Truck.
Once he gets the buzz gets out, he said he hopes to see crowds of 800 to 1,000 at the event.
The Hump Day Food Truck Lot is at the corner of 14th Street and Santa Monica Boulevard. Trucks will serve lunch and dinner every Wednesday. Lunch hours are 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and dinner hours are 4-9 p.m.