Story by Abigail Shipp, photos by Jason Lakis
Tired of cafeteria food, but don’t want to make the journey down the street to other options?
Try the food truck, McQueen’s newest lunchtime food option.
Every Thursday through the rest of the school year, Washoe Noshery, a food truck operated by Washoe County School District’s Nutrition Services, will be open to McQueen students and staff. The food truck parks near the front parking lot staircase each week.
Student turnout for the first food truck event, Aug. 25, was impressive. Washoe Noshery’s head chef said he estimated more than 120 students bought lunch from the truck this week.
But, don’t let the large turnout discourage you from giving it a try in the future. McQueen sophomore Serenity Bowers said she thought “the line went pretty fast.”
Lines moved quickly enough that some students had time to go back around and order more food. And, many students said the lines moved fast enough to keep them coming back in the future.
Another big reason students expected to be return customers was the food itself. School lunches are not often associated with fine dining, but students said Washoe Noshery was different.
“It tastes absolutely amazing,” McQueen freshman Alex Cleymaet said of his BBQ Chipotle Chicken flatbread.
Meals range in price from $2 for a single entree to $2.85 for a combo that includes the entree, beverage, and up to two sides. Each week, Washoe Noshery will offer a different menu. Next week, Sept. 1, the food truck will be serving Asian food.
All of Washoe Noshery’s meals are prepared locally – nothing is frozen – and meals are cooked shortly before lunch begins. Creating fresh food options is important to the food truck’s mission, said school district staff.
Nutrition Services’ marketing manager, Celexsy Adame, said the food truck not only serves students, but was also created by students. Every aspect of developing the food truck project, from focus groups of local high school students who taste-tested the food to the food truck’s logo and graphics, were designed and voted on by students.
“[When students] told us, ‘This is bland, we want more spice,” we refined it,” Adame said.
Washoe Noshery has been a year in the making. Originally, Nutrition Services applied for a bid to purchase two trucks, but it only received one, said Tracy Marcum, Director of Nutrition Services. Nonetheless, she thinks the food truck idea is off to a good start. She also said she was excited by the student response during this week’s launch.
Students are excited, too.
“It’s my new favorite food,” McQueen student Justin Thompson said.
So, if you’re looking to shake up your lunch routine, make plans next week to check out Washoe Noshery for yourself. The prices are fair and affordable, even for us broke high schoolers.