If you’ve ever dreamed of running a food truck, next summer could be your chance.
Edward But, the owner of Coyote’s Bistro in Yellowknife, purchased a food truck last year before realizing he didn’t have time to operate it – so he’s calling for business proposals from the community to take over the space for a season.
“You bought a food truck last year, you’re not doing anything with it. Find a way to make use of it,” But said his wife told him.
And so But will hold a contest to give the space away, similar to the popular entrepreneurial pitch show Dragon’s Den – or to the City of Yellowknife’s call for proposals to operate the Wildcat Café each summer.
He’s calling his contest Coyote’s Den. People have about two weeks left to send him their business plans.
The food truck comes with fryers, a flat top and a grill, and coolers. But said he’ll also supply “a little bit of starting capital” and will add to the truck’s kitchen if anything is missing.
“I’ve always been given opportunities,” he said, looking back on his 25 years of business in the city and explaining this is his way of giving back.
“When something bad happens, something good always happens again and something always picks me up.”
He has already had 15 to 20 people express interest in submitting a proposal. Three people have told him their plans are ready.
He’s asking people to send him a message on Facebook if they are interested in submitting a plan.
“We’ve heard everything from Mexican to carnival food, all kinds of other street foods,” But said, also listing poutine and bannock burgers.
“One of the things I’ve noticed about Yellowknife with all the different restaurants opening up, all the different types of ethnic foods that are so popular here? People in Yellowknife know and love food.”
In a couple of weeks, he’ll reach out to candidates to interview them for the opportunity. He said it’s important that people show they have thought through things like staffing the truck and preparing for busy events.
“Because I love the North so much, I want to be able to leave a legacy here,” he said.
“If this goes well this year, why not make the food truck the Coyote’s Den? Flip the signage or the wrapping on it every year to reflect the winner, and every year we have a distinct winner.”