Cookeville Regional’s new “Frontline Food Park” has seen some major success since launching last week.
Chief Strategy Officer Ricky Shelton said that such an option was long-requested by employees. He said that their goal is to have two to three trucks every day, and eventually options for the night shift as well.
“It’s kind of hard, you know, if you have 30 minutes or so for lunch, it’d be very difficult to leave there, go across town to try to get food, and come back within that time frame,” Shelton said. “So it opens up the opportunity that they can have something a little different than what we normally have inside the building.”
Shelton said that the food trucks might also alleviate some of the difficulties their nutrition program has had with getting employees and having the cafeteria fully open with all its services.
Shelton said that the food truck park is located off an employee parking lot on the corner of Hickory and 4th. He said that the park features a grassy area where the hospital plans to have picnic tables so employees can enjoy their breaks outside.
“Our employees and staff are on the front line of helping and saving lives so it came from that’s why we named it that,” Shelton said. “(…)It’s been neat to see a concept come to fruition and it be enjoyed by our employees and staff who have worked so hard and been through so much, especially with the last two years as we’ve been through COVID. So it’s just an opportunity to boost the morale for them and see it’s something that they can enjoy.”
Shelton said that the food park is not exclusively for hospital employees and patient families. He said that it can be enjoyed by everyone in the community.