Food truck season kicks off this week. Your guide to Charlotte’s food truck rallies

I spent as much time as I possibly could outside yesterday, using any excuse I could to enjoy the beautiful, warm, sunny weather. That kind of weather gets me excited about spring and summer, which gets me excited about eating food and drinking outside, which gets me thinking about food truck rallies.

Now, as I mentioned in this week’s The Good News Is podcast, I started avoiding the Food Truck Friday in South End the past couple of years. Waiting in extremely long lines for food then sitting in a crowded dirt lot to scarf down my tacos became less and less appealing to me. So losing the FTF lot was the least of my worries when I learned a new development would take over that block.

But I’m looking forward to food truck season this year because there seem to be so many more options, which means, in theory, that the crowds will be spread out in different areas of town. (One worry: Are there enough good food trucks to go around?) And, even with the crowds, I do love eating food truck food outside.

Food truck season really gets going this week with two starting on Friday. Here’s where you can get your food truck fill this spring and summer*:

(1) Matthews Food Truck Fridays

Kicks off: This Friday, March 4. 5-9 p.m.

Where: Stumptown Park, on Trade Street in downtown Matthews.

Food trucks (for the March 4 event):

– A Bao Time

– Bebo’s American Bistro

– Comfort Foods on Wheels

– Food Freaks of NC

– KO Food Truck

– Ooowee BBQ

– Sophie’s Soul Food

– What Goes Round

– Art of Baking

– Sugar Homemade Gourmet Donuts

– Coffee Priest

Anything else?: Live music, but no pets or alcohol.

(2) Friday Night Festival, South End

Kicks off: This Friday, March 4. 5-10 p.m.

Where: Parking lot for Unknown Brewing and Craft, 1327 S Mint Street.

Food trucks (for the March 4 event):

– Cuzzo’s Cuisine Food Truck

– Sauceman’s

– Hiya Food truck

– Poppin Pita

– Bebo’s Mac Shack

– SOCA mobile eatery

– JessKakes LLC

Anything else?: Live music and, obviously, beer (because it’s at a brewery) and wine.

(3) Food Truck Friday — South End

Kicks off: March 11.

Where: Sycamore Brewing, 2161 Hawkins Street.

Food trucks: 12, a rotating lineup. (Follow on Facebook and Twitter for updates.)

Anything else?: Beer (duh), dog friendly, beer-garden style seating, live music.

Meet the new South End FTF.

(4) Food Truck Friday — Plaza Midwood

Kicks off: April 1, 5-9 p.m.

Where: Behind The Light Factory, 1817 Central Ave. (Across from the Harris Teeter.)

Food trucks (for the April 1 event): 

– Wingzza

– Spice Wagon

– Sugar Donuts

– Tiger Yakitori

– Roaming Fork

– Taco Green-Go

– Comfort Foods

– Smoke and Go

– Sticks and Cones

Anything else?: Follow the event on Facebook and Twitter for more info as the first event gets closer.

(5) LoSo Eats

When: Every Wednesday (it already started!), 5-9 p.m.

Where: The lot beside Red Clay Ciderworks, 255 Clanton Rd.

Food trucks (for March 2 … it rotates so watch the Facebook page):

– Hiya

– Now Toasted

– He fed 5000

– Buffalo’s Best

Anything else?: Grab your food then head over to Red Clay for cider, beer and a place to sit.

Others: lists some other food truck rallies around the area.

– Monthly Saturday night rally in Steele Creek starting May 7 and continuing the first Saturday of every month through October. 4-8 p.m., 13530 Choate Circle.

– Monthly Saturday night rally in Harrisburg, starting April 9 and continuing the second Saturday of every month through October (except for September). On Hagler Street (Carl Parmer Drive), between Kee Lane ​and Main Street.

– Monthly Saturday night rally in Prosperity Village starting April 16 and continuing the third Saturday of every month through October. 4-9 p.m., 10220 Prosperity Park Drive (off exit 26 of the new 485 section near Highland Creek).

– Concert series and food truck Friday in Waxhaw starting June 10 and running every Friday through Aug. 12. 7-9 p.m., 209 W. S. Main Street. Waxhaw.

Update — more:

SouthPark Eats Alternative, SouthPark, 5970 Fairview Road. Wedensday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. with about six trucks each week. The spring kickoff is March 23, but there’s a smaller weekly rally throughout winter.

*Check websites and social media to confirm times and start dates.

Did we miss any? Let us know.

Photo: Charlotte Observer file