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Summer Food Festivals: Tips for Operating and Marketing A Successful Food Booth

Back Print

July 11, 2024

As the street food phenomenon continues to sizzle, summer food festivals have become the ultimate destination for customers to try food on the go! These events offer chefs a platform to showcase their creativity, while customers can indulge in diverse flavors and discover their new favorite spots.

Are you looking to capitalize on summer dining trends with a food stall? Check out the benefits and best practices below.

4 Brand-Enhancing Benefits Food Festivals Provide

Food-focused outdoor festivals and street fairs pop up when the weather warms up. Whether you are an established brick-and-mortar, a future chef testing the waters, or a food cart, food stalls provide customer and community exposure. With over 7,000 summer food festivals in the U.S., there are plenty of opportunities to tap into the benefits.

1. Brand Exposure 

Summer food festivals attract large crowds, which means foodservice operators can reach new clientele. Furthermore, the in-person interaction lets customers get to know the face of your company, which can help build direct relationships.

2. Brand Loyalty 

Today’s consumers are looking for an experience. 78 percent of millennials, for example, prefer to splurge on an experiential-based activity rather than a single item. As a food stall operator at a festival, being part of a unique experience can convert stall-goers into loyal customers. To boost customer engagement, offer a festival rewards program or discounts when customers tag your food stall on social media.

3. Networking Opportunities

In addition to reaching new customers, summer festivals allow restaurants to engage with other businesses in the community. These connections can lead to further community events and great cross-promotion opportunities.

4. Enhanced Sales 

There is no denying the power of foot traffic. Festivals can bring hundreds to thousands of people to yourbooth. Developing a streamlined menu with low food costs means you can serve up tons of dishes at high profit margins, increasing your overall sales.

Driving People to Your Food Booth With Restaurant Marketing

If you are new to operating a food booth, you want to develop a plan to maximize traffic and keep costs low. Here are some tips to help you market your booth while maintaining your food cost margins.

Hone Your Branding

Summer festivals have dozens of stalls, so you want to ensure your booth captures attention and stands out. Connect with your customers by providing clear signage, an engaging logo, and a memorable tagline. Consider branded uniforms, to-go packaging, stickers, and business cards to drive your business name. Keep your branding consistent across each festival you attend to be instantly recognizable to customers.

Showcase Stunning Dishes

Pack your food booth menu with your best-selling dishes. Giving stall-goers your most popular offerings ensures they will always have a noteworthy meal. Consider offering free samples to entice customers and stand out against the competition.

Advertise Future Events

Convert a first-time customer to a regular by displaying upcoming menu specials, culinary events, and future festivals. Present QR codes that allow customers to follow your social media accounts and upcoming food feasts.


If you are an established restaurant, offer a dining discount when a festival-goer visits your brick-and-mortar.

Set Your Booth Up for Success

Besides good signage and branding, there are a few other ways to set up your stall to grab the most attention.

  • Consider offering some outdoor seating for guests to sit and relax.
  • Provide plenty of lighting to help guests navigate low-light areas.
  • Appeal to people’s senses by using vibrant colors, cooking aromatic eats, and playing music.
  • Set up cooling stations like water misters or fans to attract customers.

Partner with Your Local Wholesale Supplier for Success

Are you looking to keep food costs low without sacrificing quality? US Foods CHEF’STORE is here to make your food booth a success. We stock high-end ingredients at competitive prices. We also carry a wealth of food booth supplies—from paper plates to to-go packaging, Cambro container products, and more. 

Visit one of our locations near you or get our exceptional items delivered directly.

The information materials and opinions contained in this blog/website are for general information purposes only, are not intended to constitute legal or other professional advice and should not be relied on or treated as a substitute for specific advice relevant to particular circumstances. We make no warranties, representations, or undertakings about any of the content of this blog/website (including, without limitation, as to the quality, accuracy, completeness or fitness for any particular purpose of such content).

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