HAMPTON ROADS, Va. — If you follow your nose in Hampton Roads, chances are you’ll end up at a food truck.
Friday morning, customers could be found in waiting in line at Klassic Doughnuts in Chesapeake.
“It smells really good,” said Alexis Crockett of Chesapeake.
“The glazed ones are the best. We’re still going to try the coffee one and obviously the cinnamon sugar one too,” said Chelsea Bayer of Chesapeake.
Co-owner Karisa Hochstetler and her family serve customers dozens and dozens of sweet treats.
“[The business] kind of just kept growing,” said Hochstetler.
Down the road in Newport News, another crowd gathered to try what Flame and Pie owner Glenn Allen prepared.
“I started making pizzas and I just love it,” said Allen. “Food trucks have been booming in the last few years, I think since the pandemic,” said Allen.
It’s that growing industry that led the City of Hampton to change food truck permitting rules at the end of May.
Currently, food truck owners have to apply for a permit each time they move locations in Hampton.
Starting next year, however, food truck owners only need to apply for a single permit. Hampton businesses can apply to be a food truck host site, too.
“I think these new changes in the Hampton rules will streamline how food trucks can get started,” said Allen.
Some restrictions apply, but the city says once a business site is approved it doesn’t need to reapply each year.
“A lot of these food trucks can grow into brick-and-mortar businesses and that’s part of what we want,” said Robin McCormick, the communication strategist for the City of Hampton.
Not all vendors plan to operate in Hampton, but they say they hope the changes encourage more people to visit a food truck, and they say the hard work of running one is worth it.
“When people come through the line ordering two or three dozen, I know they’re not eating them all themselves. They’re sharing them and that makes me happy,” said Hochstetler.
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