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Civic Center Eats returns to Denver this year amid pandemic, scaled back and socially distant

Food trucks will line up Wednesday and Thursday
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Posted at 5:25 PM, Aug 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-12 19:25:09-04

DENVER -- Civic Center Eats is back after a three-month hiatus while organizers worked to get approval from local officials and put the proper safety measures in place as Colorado tries to safely get back to a sense of normality during the coronavirus pandemic.

"First and foremost people do have to wear masks, we ask that people have masks on unless they’re eating and keeping social distance as well. You’ll also find a controlled area with a single entrance and exit," said Eric Lazzari, Executive Director for the Civic Center Conservancy.

Food trucks will be lined up in the park every Wednesday and Thursday through mid-October. Lunch will be served from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. and this year the event is adding a dinner service from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.

"We are all going through hard times, it’s nice to have these little bright spots," said Lazzari.

Regulars will notice the event has been scaled back because the capacity has been limited to 150 people. In past years, the Civic Center Eats could bring in anywhere from 1,500 to 2,000 people per day.

The number of trucks has been limited too — there will be four to five food trucks per day and vendors will rotate.

"We will normally have 20 to 25 trucks here the number of trucks is directly related to the number of people that we can have here," said Lazzari.

Despite the changes, food truck owners are happy the event is back. Billy's Gourmet Hot Dogs lost 80% of its normal revenue as the pandemic hit and the food truck has been a lifeline.

"The food truck has been a blessing because we’ve been able to move the food truck to various locations whether its business that are requesting it or a bar or a brewery that we go to," said Bill Feid, owner of Billy's Gourmet Hot Dogs.