Lord’s Diner to start a food truck

WICHITA — Food trucks are so popular, even God is getting one.

Well, his diner is anyway.

The Lord’s Diner is going to begin operating a food truck this month and park it at the Evergreen Recreation Center near 26th and Arkansas.

“It’s for everyone – particularly people in need,” says Lord’s Diner director Jan Haberly.

The Kansas Food Bank suggested that area, which is where Cloud Elementary School is. Haberly says about 90 percent of the school’s lunches are free or reduced in price.

“That’s kind of a key that there’s need in that area.”

Even before the food truck craze hit Wichita a couple of years ago, the Lord’s Diner started considering a truck.

Someone on the Lord’s Diner board saw a similar nonprofit truck in Texas several years ago.

“We were looking at ways to expand our mission, and we just thought that was kind of a cool idea,” Haberly says.

Starting Sept. 23, the truck with be at the rec center from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. every Monday through Thursday, which is what worked for the center.

Haberly says the Lord’s Diner wanted a dining area for potential truck patrons, which the rec center is providing. She says the Lord’s Diner didn’t want to use someone else’s kitchen, though.

“We keep the food safety controls in our hands.”

Haberly says the Lord’s Diner wants the flexibility of a truck to potentially drive to other sites as well. There are already discussions about a second truck.

Each of the free truck meals will have a meat, starch, vegetable and fruit or salad along with dessert.

“We try and do a balanced meal,” Haberly says.

The truck doesn’t have an official name, though Haberly teasingly named it while working on it recently.

“I named it Francis today after the pope.”

An uncomfortable but timely reminder follows Kansas Food Bank donation

Kansas Food Bank CEO Brian Walker with Denise and me.

Kansas Food Bank CEO Brian Walker with Denise and me.

There was an interesting little juxtaposition of events in my life on Friday.

First, Denise Neil and I stopped by the Kansas Food Bank to drop off the $1,316 raised at our second On the Town With Carrie and Denise event.

Then, that night, I came down with a horrible stomach bug that has left me fairly miserable since then. What does one have to do with the other?

Well, after days of not eating much, I woke at 5 a.m. Tuesday with maddeningly loud, almost painful hunger pangs. I was so hungry I couldn’t get back to sleep. I rolled out of bed, dragged myself downstairs, still sort of stunned at what I was doing, and ate a piece of bread and some crackers. Finally, I could concentrate on getting some rest.

It was a sad glimpse into what life must be like every day for thousands of Kansans who don’t have enough to eat, except they don’t have cabinets full of food at the ready when the need strikes.

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On the town at the new Newport Grill

I’ve done a little reconnaissance and can report there are a number of good reasons to visit the new Newport Grill at Bradley Fair tonight.

First, it will be fun to see the space, which has been transformed from the former Cibola restaurant. Cibola had a darker, clubbier feel, while Newport has a lighter atmosphere with a cool blue bar.

And I can sum up the food in one word: Yum. There are a lot of nonseafood options along with traditional and inventive seafood fare.

You’ll have a chance to sample a number of dishes at our On the Town With Carrie and Denise event tonight. It’s a cocktail mixer that, with your suggested $10 donation, will benefit the Kansas Food Bank.

It’s from 5 p.m. to 7, though I’m sure that will stretch a little later. Hope you’ll stop by.