The Big Texas Beer Fest's Food Problem

Categories: Food News

Big Texas Beer Fest Passed Out Dude.jpg
Jay Barker
Maybe if this guy had more to eat he'd have lasted a little longer.
Chad Montgomery got a lesson in event promotion over the weekend. The operations manager by day, beer guzzler by night had never organized a large public event before, and he learned a few lessons with his inaugural Big Texas Beer Fest.

One lesson is to take food truck commitments with a grain of salt. A week before the event, Montgomery thought around four food trucks would be coming to offer up grub at the beer fest. Then the people behind The Butcher's Son, a truck owned my Two Trucks LLC backed out. Montgomery got nervous.

Weiss Enterprises, who runs concessions at Fair Park and events all over Dallas like the bridge to nowhere party and this weekend's NASCAR events, helped out. Alan Weiss, who runs event planning for the company, spooled up resources that weren't being used for his other events to sell nachos, hot dogs and hamburgers on-site. Then Montgomery booked Eat Joe Dogs, a food truck specializing in tube steaks and bratwursts. But even that wasn't enough.

Then Gandolfo's pulled an all-out no-show, according to Montgomery and some initial coverage of the event.

Dain Pool, a co-owner of of the company that owns both Gandolfo's and the Butchers Son trucks, claims it was a misunderstanding. His group signed two contracts with two $250 retainers and articulated discomfort with the 35 percent fee on all sales, levied by the city and Weiss Enterprises, when they signed. A New Year's Eve event hosted downtown only required a 10 percent fee by comparison, according to Pool.

That Monday, when they canceled the one truck, they intended to cancel both. They coughed up their retainer of both trucks because they found a more lucrative weekend attraction.

Pool wouldn't tell me what commission he was charged to park at the Texas Motor Speedway this weekend, but with a seating capacity of 212,585 you don't really need to do the math. The Big Texas Beerfest drew around 4,000, as estimated by Montgomery. I asked Pool how sales were this weekend and he didn't talk numbers but his response said a lot. "To be honest, it was phenomenal," he said.


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17 comments
txcelt
txcelt

Fair Park fees chase away a lot of events.  Looks like this might be another one...

CheeryBitch
CheeryBitch

I live farther out than the suburbs (in the kuntry, like, ya know, where farm animals and them tractory-things are) and even I truck all the way down to Fair Park! Even with Dallas mis-management, it's a cool place. Come check it out this saturday night for Assassination City Roller Derby.

Steve
Steve

Outdoors.   Food booths.  Bands.  Sponsors.  Not in Fair Park.    More beer companies.  Maybe one of them 5-Hour Energy cars.

GusMitchem
GusMitchem

You pussies a beer fest is for drinking not eating

Waaaaaaa

Foo
Foo

doing ANYTHING at fair park.. is just a rip off for the promoters... fair park is just TOOOOO greedy.

SamG
SamG

I've put on several events, festivals, etc. We usually got an upfront fee from the food truck or vendor and that was it. A few of them were quite large (10k people beer fests) and the vendors loved us b/c they were so busy. They came back every year.

It's silly to ask these food vendors to track all of their sales when you're also asking them to stay busy and provide quality food. This one Hillbilly BBQ guy I used to hire would stab me with his tongs if I asked him to itemize everything and give me 35%.

We made sure to have one BBQ, one taco, one Asian concept, one Desert, one Italian/Pizza so they were all happy.

Ed D.
Ed D.

35% fee on all sales? Yeah, that's insanity.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

This was the first time the event happened, you're going to have to work out kinks. I have a feeling next year the commission "fee" is going to be much lower. 

Coleman
Coleman

 I know it's hard to believe, what with how primitive you butt-fucking suburbanites are, but Fair Park is actually really cool and not nearly as crime-infested as you imagine.

Aaron Porkstick Miller
Aaron Porkstick Miller

With all of the small towns and suburbs doing great things, I'll be damned if I'm gonna truck to Fair Park.  I can get drunk up north anytime....and have faaaarrrrrrrrrrrr better vittles than hotdogs of any form or fashion. Without the urine or the crime....no matter how much I adore each.

Chad Montgomery
Chad Montgomery

I agree Ed, but the City's fees are quite high on Fair Park property. We told all food vendors to simply raise their prices 35% to offset the fees, and most didn't seem to want to do this and frankly I don't blame them.

In the end, as Scott mentioned we don't see any of this money and as festival organizers, we just wanted good food available for our patrons. We'll work hard to address this issue for next year's event as the venue was perfectly suited otherwise.

Scott Reitz
Scott Reitz

 working on a correction now. The fee didn't go to Montgomery it went to Dallas and Fair Park.

CheeryBitch
CheeryBitch

Yes, because Frisco - where the bars close at midnight and chain restaurants infect every corner - is SO the place to be! (The 'burbs have plenty of crime and pissing-in-the-parking lot, too.)

Coleman
Coleman

 oh fuck you and your suburbs

Jimmypaine
Jimmypaine

Please , please, PLEASE stay in your northern suburb...you and the house-frow.  Yuck

Ner_do_well
Ner_do_well

 Only if you'll promise to keep you're cooler than-thou-self inside LBJ.And it's house-frau.

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