GRAHAM, TX (KAUZ) - On June 4th, thousands of people from both inside and outside of Graham will pack the city and county square in downtown for the 2nd Annual Food Truck Championship of Texas. The event will allow food trucks from all over the state to sign up register and earn a spot on the square to compete for a $10,000 grand prize. Last year's competition saw thousands attend with 33 different food trucks lined up to serve their best, but it was The Gypsy Kit of Wichita Falls that earned the championship win.
Graham is a dry town located in a dry section of Young County. Grahams Ordinance #540 reads "It shall be unlawful for any person to possess or consume any alcoholic beverages, including beer, within the confines of the city square of Graham, Texas." A separate section of that ordinance defines boundaries as the four streets surrounding the square: Fourth, Second, Elm, and Oak; however, on Thursday morning, the Graham City Council will hold one of two votes regarding a possible change to those rules.
The Graham Convention and Visitors Bureau has requested a variance from Ordinance #540 to allow possession and consumption of alcohol beverages in the city square during the Food Truck Championship Event. The city explained that if a variance were to be granted, it must first hold three separate votes during three separate city council meetings. The city can only approve the variance as long as a majority is supportive during the three votes.
The Visitors Convention and Visitors Bureau believes that offering alcohol as an option for those attending could increase the chance that more people show up on championship day. Wendy Collins, a mother of two, said she agrees with the CVB that alcohol sales could increase attendance for the event.
"I'm not for alcohol sales. You know, I am fine with a dry county. I think that is absolutely fine, but for a particular event of this sort. It would really help draw in people from all over the state," said Collins.
Just down the road from the square, Daddy Bob's was selling BBQ out of their food truck. Owner, Manager, and Cook "Daddy Bob" Bratcher said the event is a win-win for Graham, with or without alcohol sales. Bratcher said that the sales, hotel, and other taxes like food will still bring in plenty of money to the local economy, including surrounding businesses.
"I have nothing to do with the alcohol sales. I am a food truck. I have nothing to do with that whatsoever, so in my opinion, if the city wants to bring that in, I will say that I do abide, and I enjoyed a beer on the square, just like a lot of my other colleagues, and I don't see it being as that big of a deal," said Bratcher.
Several thousands of people attended the 1st Texas Food Truck Championship in 2015. Alcohol was allowed to be sold during the event and local law enforcement on patrol said there were no reported problems related to alcohol.