by Cassie Mattia

Loveland, Ohio – Foodies from all over came together to enjoy local food trucks, vendors, and superb live entertainment on Saturday at Shopper’s Haven Plaza for the 8th Annual Loveland Food Truck Rally!

Me being the Food Guru I am, I couldn’t miss out on all the local cuisine, so I grabbed my boyfriend and enjoyed a beautiful walk from Downtown Loveland to Shopper’s Haven Plaza.

As Adam and I inched closer to the Food Truck Rally we were beyond impressed with the 24 Food Trucks lined along the plaza welcoming the community as they selected their food truck of choice! Included in all the fun were inflatables for children to play on, face painting and henna tattoos, vendor booths in which local businesses/organizations, like LIFE Food Pantry and Garden City Chiropractic, were able to share their story with the community, exciting give-away raffles, and a stage in which 3 different entertainment groups, Premier Dance and Tumbling, Minar and Sowers, and The Dan Varner Band, were able to perform while many stopped to watch to cheer them on.

Those who attended the Food Truck Rally were able to bring in their own “Tailgating” set-up so that they could safely and comfortably enjoy the atmosphere and of course the most important part; the food. Take a look at the video below for a glimpse into the 2021 Loveland Food Truck Rally!

After going to the last few Food Truck Rallies I have learned that the best way to take in all the Food Trucks is to start from the first truck and slowly but surely make your way to each and every one. Me being the journalist I am I have gotten into the habit of documenting each Food Truck and what they bring to the table so that by the time I get to the last Food Truck I know exactly which ones I’m going to try!

This year the Food Truck Rally had a little something for everyone! From the unique flavor combinations from Kona Ice to the Texas Joe award-winning Brisket, not one community member came out of the Rally empty-handed. Being Vegan, each year I am always curious as to what Food Trucks will be representing those with a plant-based lifestyle, and to my pleasant surprise, I had several options to choose from.

One of my favorite Vegan Food Truck options was Just Jerks Jamaican Grill. Just Jerks specialized in “Rice Boxes” and Tacos with a little Jamaican flair! I decided to go with the Veggie Rice Box, which included Plantains, Jamaican rice and beans, sauteed veggies, and Caribbean slaw. The Plantains were to die for as they melted right in my mouth when I took my first bite. Jenn’s HOT Tamale Food Truck also had some great Latin street eats for Vegans as they featured both sliders and tacos with Zucchini substituted as the protein!

Although many are now moving towards a plant-based lifestyle, the Loveland Food Truck Rally had more than enough options for the meat-lovers out there!

East Coast Eatz represented a blacked-out style Food Truck offering a variety of cheesesteaks, chicken subs, and street tacos. Rock n Rolls displayed a vintage speaker on their Food Truck and specialized in Tots (Goetta and Buffalo Chicken), Egg Rolls, and Wraps including an Orange Ginger Chicken combo. Mama Bear’s Mac ended up being my boyfriend’s Food Truck dinner choice as he ordered the Flamin’ Jack Grilled Cheese. Even though I couldn’t try the grilled cheese, my boyfriend said and I quote, “My mouth is on fire, but for some reason, I can’t stop eating this!”

Of course after a filling yet scrumptious dinner you have to get something sweet, right? That simply is a no-brainer for me. The Food Truck Rally had so many sweet options that I believe some of those that attended the Rally skipped dinner and went straight for dessert! The legendary Loveland Dairy Whip brought their mobile truck, serving up only the creamiest soft serve you can imagine, while Funnel Vision offered 10 creative funnel cake creations ranging from Maple Bacon to Tooty Fruity to Salted Caramel Pretzel.

I decided to go with Sweet Maize Kettle Corn being the popcorn lover I am. I was anticipating an average-sized bag of Kettle Corn but when my boyfriend went to order it for me he came back with a 13-pound bag of Kettle Corn! Needless to say, I’m still working on finishing the bag. There have already been a couple of nights where I have woken up the next morning with the bag of Kettle Corn laying right next to my pillow! I think that describes how fantastic Sweet Maize Kettle Corn tastes.

Cincinnati’s Graeter’s also brought their Food Truck, which of course you can’t go wrong with a couple of scoops of their infamous Black Raspberry Chip, while The Cheesecakery made an appearance again this year featuring Oreo, Birthday Cake Batter, White Chocolate Raspberry, Original with Lemon Creme, and Chocolate Silk as their cheesecake flavors.

All 24 Food Trucks present at the Annual Food Truck Rally went above and beyond to serve up only the best street food to those wanting to support the individuals working within the Food Trucks’ passions. Little Miami River Chamber of Alliance President, Cee Cee Collins said the feedback from the community this year was out of this world.

“Loveland is back open! We had the largest attendance we have ever had for the 2021 Loveland Food Truck Rally,” Collins said, “The feedback we are receiving is amazing. Everyone feels it was a fantastic day all around; great weather, great music, great company, and GREAT FOOD! We want to see any guests come back soon and visit all of the businesses throughout our area over the summer months.”

Meredith Taylor, Little Miami River Chamber of Alliance Program Director, couldn’t agree more with Collins, as she said she couldn’t thank the community of Loveland enough for all of their support.

“It was an amazing day and night! Thanks to so many of the community members who came out to support us. The food trucks, vendors and entertainment had a blast and we can’t wait for the next one,” Taylor said, “Loveland is a special place and we are honored to serve you and the business community!”

If you missed out on the Loveland Food Truck Rally’s musical guests or you would just like to reminisce on all the fun you had watching, check out the videos below!

Minar and Sowers Performing at the 2021 Loveland Food Truck Rally
The Nationally Recognized Dan Varner Band Putting on a Great Show at the 2021 Loveland Food Truck Rally

Thank you to all those who supported, helped, and served up delicious food at this year’s Annual Loveland Food Truck Rally! We are so lucky to be a part of a community that enjoys spending time together while supporting one another’s passions. I for one can’t wait until next year’s Food Truck Rally as well as all of the fun and exciting things to come this summer in Loveland as we safely transition back to a bit of normalcy!

Be sure to stay tuned to all things delicious with Me, Cassie the Food Guru, as I take on the absolute best cuisine in the area and share it with YOU our loyal Loveland Magazine readers! Enjoy the photos I captured at the 2021 Loveland Food Truck Rally below!

Click on an image to enlarge.

Columnist Cassie Mattia is a resident of Historic Downtown Loveland. She is the Associate Editor of Loveland Magazine. Contact Cassie if you are interested in promoting your event or business in Loveland Magazine. Cassie also Emcee’s events so feel free to reach out if you are in need of an Emcee for your next event, fundraiser, or sports-related competition.

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