City renews itinerant food vendor permits


The Seymour City Council has agreed to renew two itinerant food vendors licenses but will hold off on approving new ones until state-issued restrictions in response to COVID-19 are lifted.

At that time, it will be at Clerk-Treasurer Darrin Boas’ discretion whether to approve such licenses based on public health, safety and welfare.

During a meeting Monday, Dave Earley, chairman of the government affairs committee, made the recommendation as a way to best serve local businesses and the public’s interest. Besides Earley, the committee is made up of councilmen Chad Hubbard and Matt Wheeler.

Earley said the changes allow for some different food options for the public while still respecting local food establishments.

“We thought this was a way to bridge the gap and make it as fair as we possibly could,” Earley said.

The two permits renewed were for Gresham’s Concessions of Hayden and Steak and Seafood Direct, a frozen meat truck from Louisiana that sets up in the Tractor Supply Co. parking lot every three months. Steak and Seafood Direct already had purchased four permits for the year before the COVID-19 restrictions were put into place.

The itinerant permit costs $100 and is good for three days.

Gresham’s Concessions operates three different food stands — Mr Beefy’s, Miss Piggy’s and The Sausage Grill — and plans to rotate stands weekly in Seymour depending on product availability.

They set up The Sausage Grill in the Village Center parking lot next to Taco Bell for three days in late April before the council voted to suspend itinerant food permits so it could reevaluate the situation.

The Sausage Grill will be back in the same location from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. today through Sunday. Menu items include Polish and Italian sausages, hamburgers, corn dogs and lemon shake-ups. They are a regular at local festivals and events, including the Seymour Oktoberfest.

Faced with significant financial losses due to cancellations of events with mass gatherings, vendors are looking for ways to recoup some of that money. Setting up in local parking lots for the weekends is one such way.

A representative from Gresham’s said via Facebook the family wanted to thank their customers for their support.

“Seymour fans, you asked and it happened,” they posted on Facebook. “Thanks to your support, the great city of Seymour, Indiana, is allowing us to come back.”

The city began receiving applications for itinerant food booths in late April.

Mayor Matt Nicholson said he never had a problem with Gresham’s because he considers them local, but the city also had received a request from a vendor based in Vevay.

“The big reason it got brought to council was because of my fear of setting up small, mini festivals in parking lots,” Nicholson said. “You end up with nine trailers in the JayC Foods Plus parking lot, and we didn’t want that.”

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