Whitehall News

Whitehall gearing for inaugural Food Truck and Fun Festival July 27


Whitehall will host the city's first Whitehall Food Truck and Fun Festival from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday, July 27, on South Yearling Road, between Etna Road and Langley Avenue.

South Yearling Road will be closed to vehicles between Etna and Langley to accommodate about 25 food trucks, an entertainment stage and other activities.

The city contracted with a specialist to help get the city's inaugural event up and running.

Mike Gallicchio, who established the Columbus Food Truck Festival in 2011, is helping Whitehall launch a similar event.

"We're planning a very family-oriented and fun event, with a lot of great food and activities for children, too," Gallicchio said.

The Whitehall Food Truck and Fun Festival will feature about 25 food trucks, Gallicchio said, including Mikey's Late Night Slice, My Place or Yours, Hungry Monkey Food Truck, That Food Truck and the Good Frank.

"There will be a wide variety of food -- about anything you can imagine," Gallicchio said.

Live music will be performed on a stage at the corner of Rickenbacker Avenue and South Yearling Road from noon to 10 p.m.

Greg Swan and the Late Crew will play from noon to 1 p.m.; Brightlight will play from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.; Full Tilt will perform from 4 to 5:30 p.m.; Shucking Bubba will play from 6 to 7:30 p.m.; and the PopBillies will conclude the entertainment, playing from 8 to 10 p.m.

The children's area has inflatables, a petting zoo, face-painting, balloon sculpting and a miniature golf area.

Arts and crafts vendors will be at the event, too.

City officials began planning the event earlier this year, with the assistance of development director Zach Woodruff, Mayor Kim Maggard and the previous community-affairs coordinator.

"We wanted an event that could be recognized as unique to Whitehall," new community-affairs coordinator Kristin Hampton-Harmon said.

"We don't have a tomato festival or a corn festival," she said, adding that city officials felt that National Night Out, scheduled for Aug. 6 this year, had maximized its scope and size. "We think this event will grow and also bring visitors to Whitehall."

Admission is free, as is parking, although patrons will need to search for on-street parking.

Hampton-Harmon said patrons should observe any "no parking" signs or other restrictions that could apply to private property, but otherwise on-street parking is available.

"People should be coming and going at different times," so parking shouldn't be a significant problem, she said.

Get Behind the Badge, a nonprofit organization founded in 2002 by Angie McDowell, a widow of a slain Whitehall police officer, is a charitable partner for the event. The organization provides assistance to the families of police officers and other first responders who are critically injured or killed.

"The (festival) is a great way to showcase the city of Whitehall and support our community partners," Hampton-Harmon said.

For a full list of participating food vendors or other information, go online to whitehall-oh.us.