Home Truck Store Caterers pivot due to pandemic hardships, launch food truck business

Caterers pivot due to pandemic hardships, launch food truck business

LAKEVILLE — The restaurant industry has faced many hardships during the Covid-19 pandemic, with mass closures and millions of layoffs.

Many eateries have been learning how to adapt to the new regulations. Amiee and Brent Clark, owners of Clark’s Catering, are among the businesses trying to pivot in a new direction in order to stay afloat. While some restaurants have responded with makeshift outdoor seating and continued offering take out, Clark’s Catering opened a food truck located outside of Muckey’s Liquor Store in Lakeville.

“We have owned the catering company for three years, and obviously with the pandemic we kind of had no choice but to go a different direction,” Brent said. “It was either: Do we adapt? Do we change the direction that we’re going? Or do we sit back and lose everything we gained from the first two years?”

Despite events being cancelled and large social gatherings banned during the beginning of the pandemic, the Clarks weren’t about to let all their hard work go to waste.

“We just took every last penny that we had and rolled it into this to make it work,” Brent explained, and their investment has paid off. Customers have been lining up to try their home cooked meals with locally sourced ingredients.

Clark says that food trucks build communities for the cooks, employees, customers, and everyone involved. And they’re seeing that unfold at their easy-to-find spot on Route 44 in a far corner of the parking lot at the longtime local landmark, Muckey’s.

“We even have regulars now,” Brent says.

The Clarks and their team have worked hard to create a welcoming atmosphere that serves great food, and now that many local businesses are starting to reopen, so are the events, which means Brent and Amiee and their staff will be balancing their time between working in the food truck and catering parties. Monday through Thursday, from 11am to 7pm, the truck can be found outside the liquor store, while the weekends are reserved for catering.

And in an unexpected twist, the food truck has given Clark’s the freedom to travel to many different locations to cater events and serve the food that they love to cook.

“I’ve always been in the restaurant business,” Brent states. “I love food and I get excited when there are options for me to give them [customers].”

Their Facebook page and website have menus with endless options to choose from, but that isn’t all they offer.

“For catering we do all custom menus. We do have menus online but it’s a guideline. It’s basically, ‘what do you guys want to eat? What kind of party are you having? Is there a theme? Is there a budget?’ We try to work with everybody…”

Brent says, “As of now, yes,” outside of Muckey’s is a permanent location. “You know, we’d love to stay here as long as possible. Our end goal is to have an actual restaurant. But this is our start.”

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