Essential workers from the Brandon area were invited to eat for free at food trucks last month.

A local venue worked with a group of food trucks last month to feed those helping our community through the coronavirus quarantine. Tabellas, located off Causeway Blvd., hosted food trucks from all over the Tampa Bay area for two weeks in April, offering free meals for first responders and medical workers in addition to convenient, safe food for residents to purchase.

According to Tabellas representative Tess Hipp, the six-acre venue stopped hosting events last month and decided to open up to food trucks for no charge so they could provide meals to essential workers.

“During this time, Tabellas has been affected by COVID-19 by having to postpone corporate and private events that were booked at our venue,” said Hipp. “With our venue being open, we saw this as an opportunity to give back to our community in some way.”

Five food trucks participated during lunch hours on Wednesdays through Saturdays for two weeks.

“The participating food trucks not only provided free meals to people on the front line, but they were also offering delicious food options for purchase to the public in a very safe, convenient and contactless way,” said Hipp. “The concept was to order online and simply drive-thru to pick up your order. It was a great experience and we were thrilled to see our venue activated and doing some good for our city and community.”

During the event, the trucks, which included Station House BBQ, The Shred 813, Coco’s Latin Cuisine Food Truck, Nico’s Arepas, Hoke Poke and Just Smokin’ BBQ, served close to 100 police officers, firefighters, EMTs, nurses and doctors.

Tabellas, a new venue, hosts private parties of all sizes and styles, from corporate gatherings to weddings to quinceaneras.

“To us, Tabellas means togetherness,” said Hipp. “It’s the meeting space for community, group interaction and celebration. It’s bringing people together to celebrate special moments and join in unity to grow, share and celebrate life. With the times we are facing due to the coronavirus, we wanted to extend our mission to bring people together to join forces to give back to workers on the front line risking their lives for ours.”

To learn more about Tabellas, which is located at 5818 Causeway Blvd. in Tampa, call 727-458-6927 or visit

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Kate Quesada
Assignment Editor Kate Quesada started working at the Osprey Observer in 2004 after graduating from the University of South Florida with a masters degree in Mass Communications. Since then, she has held various positions at the paper and has been working as the assignment editor since January 2020. She lives in Lithia with her husband Mike and sons Dylan and Max and stays active in the community on school PTA boards and volunteering with local organizations.