The Market at Power Inn, a new Sacramento food-truck gathering and farmers market in Sacramento, promotes a big-tent philosophy of community and inclusiveness. It also holds an actual big tent.
A 100-by-50-foot tent serves as centerpiece for the market, held from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. each Friday at 3009 Power Inn Road, just south of Folsom Boulevard. The market debuted April 15 and will continue each Friday through October.
Anyone who has sweated through a barely shaded, midday summer food-truck gathering will appreciate the large covered area holding plentiful seating as well as a stage where live musical acts play each week.
On a recent Friday, men in work uniforms ordered chicken-and-waffle sandwiches from the Brunch Boys truck (the truck lineup rotates weekly) as women in workout gear bought chicken-mole tacos from Masa Taco Kitchen, a non-wheeled traveling taqueria. At another stall, in the small farmers’ market section, Jose Gallardo sold baskets of strawberries, heads of cauliflower and fat bunches of carrots grown at his Gallardo’s Organic Farm in Salinas.
Getting farm-fresh produce direct to residents of nearby neighborhoods who can bike, walk or use light rail (the market sits near the Power Inn station) is part of the market’s mission, said Laura Fickle, member relations manager for the Power Inn Alliance, a business-improvement nonprofit that serves as a de facto Chamber of Commerce for this section of southeastern Sacramento.
But the bigger goal is providing lunch options for the tens of thousands of people who work within the district’s industrial sector, at businesses such as Procter & Gamble, HP Hood and Waste Management.
We spoke with Fickle about the new weekly gathering.
Q: Who are the Power Inn Alliance’s members?
A: Our members are all the property owners in the 6.2 miles – it goes from Folsom Boulevard to just past Elder Creek Road, and then from Power Inn Road to South Watt.
Q: How many people do they employ?
A: They support 58,000 jobs. Thirty-three thousand are physically here, and between trucking companies and construction, it’s 58,000 jobs (altogether).
Q: Did a lack of lunch options elsewhere in the district inspire you to start the gathering?
A: We are highlighting our local eateries, like the Squeeze Inn, which is going to come down here (with a food truck). Just beyond them is Chando’s Tacos. … Other than that, we don’t have a ton of places to eat. We are giving people options. We call it a “place maker.” It’s a place for people to come and gather and get out of the office.
Q: How many vendors do you have at this point?
A: About 50. We hope to expand soon and increase that at least by 25 percent.
Q: Was this area underserved in terms of the quality of produce one can get from a farmers market?
A: Absolutely. (The market) was needed. And the vendors – the farmers themselves – were looking for more opportunities to get their produce at more markets. They were knocking down our doors.
Q: Are people coming here to buy items to take home, or mostly just to grab lunch?
A: I have seen a mix. They actually get lunch and then going shopping. They take their stuff back to the office.
The Market at Power Inn
What: A farmers market and food-truck gathering.
When: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Fridays through October.
Where: 3009 Power Inn Road, Sacramento
Information: powerinn.org, 916-453-8888