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Food trucks return to Winnipeg streets, but fewer than previous years

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Food trucks are back on Winnipeg streets, but people might see fewer options this summer.

Mikky's was parked on Broadway Thursday afternoon serving up fan favourites to the lunch crowd.

"Probably the first time in maybe 10 years (that we're) out in the first week of April," said owner Dan Campbell.

He said it's been a tough go in recent years dealing with the pandemic and road construction, to rising food and gas prices.

"We're holding our own. Fortunately, for my sake, there's not a lot of competition on Broadway. If there was five or ten trucks to go all year, we would all be starving."

It's a similar story for Goldie's Fries over in the Exchange District.

"The weather has been Fantastic. So we got an early start, but really, I'm very blessed," said Darryl Leiman, the owner of Goldie's Fries.

While there are a number of food truck options are the city, Mikky's and Goldie's are among the very few still parking on Winnipeg roads.

"So far, we have four food truck permits. That's food trucks that are on city streets," said Lisa Patterson, the operations and facilities manager for the City of Winnipeg.

"(I'm) not sure how many there are in surface lots or in parking lots around the city."

The four permits are down from nine last year and around 25 before the pandemic.

"We were really busy before the pandemic, and it just seems now that the numbers have been decreasing ever since."

Leiman blames the city's pricey vendor fees and he has to shell out more than $2,000 for an April to October permit.

"It's doesn't make sense. You're overcharging us, and that's why there's no trucks on the street," said Leiman.

He wants the city to reassess fees going forward. However, he continues pushing on.

"I still want to get up in the morning and go to work. I love all my customers and my friends, and I still have the energy, which is good."

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