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Lick the Plate: Food Truck Monday is back to benefit needy animals at Coastal Animal Hospital

It’s that time of year again when three of our favorite things come together for a very worthy cause. I’m talking food, music and, of course, pets. The worthy part of it is the HANA Fund and it’s worth knowing what this fine organization does for animals, and we all know the joy that pets bring to our lives.

Food Truck Monday is happening Aug. 14 at 434 N. Coast Highway 101 in Encinitas. Courtesy of Coastal Animal Hospital

So what I’ve learned is the one thing that sets this nonprofit apart from most others helping animals is that most nonprofits are only concerned with getting an animal out of a shelter or off the street and then into a home. However, once they are placed in a home there is no longer any support for the expenses if they get sick, injured, etc. That usually becomes the responsibility of the family. That said, not everyone can afford the costs that can accumulate with a very sick pet. If folks find themselves on hard times and their pet requires $2,000 of medical treatments, they have to make the heart-wrenching decision whether to treat their pet and not be able to pay rent and what often happens is they end up euthanizing an animal that they love dearly that could have gotten better with treatment. That’s a terrible position to be in and what led to the creation of the HANA Fund. That’s good stuff folks and it’s what this event is all about, raising money to help make the HANA Fund possible.

There are many touching stories that have evolved out of HANA, way too many to list here but one that resonated with me as a former cat owner is the story of Daisy. Daisy was denied care at two different hospitals because the owner could not afford the cost of care and was ready to euthanize until someone directed him to the HANA Fund. They stepped in with finances and they were able to remove the rubber ball that was stuck in her intestines and would have eventually killed her.

Now that you all know what a worthy cause that’s happening on Monday Aug. 14, let’s talk about the food and music part. It’s a mini food truck rally of sorts with Dang Brothers Pizza, Frida Cocina, SnoCal and Mastiff Sausage.

Let’s start with Dang Brothers, who are a new discovery for me. They bring mobile wood-fired pizza to all parts of San Diego with their custom, 1974 American La France yellow pizza fire truck. This unique truck and wood-burning oven combine into the ultimate catering and pizza machine. The oven is imported straight from Italy, and built right into the back of their fire truck. They offer a tasty Neapolitan-style thin crust pizza that cooks in less than two minutes at 800-plus degrees. They also offer full-service catering options that include appetizers, salads, desserts and hand-crafted beverages poured right off of the custom tap on the pump panel of the truck.

Frida Cocina is a food truck out of Chula Vista that serves delicious Baja-Med Cuisine using fresh ingredients to make everything from scratch. The word on the street, so to speak, is that they are a must try.

I’ve featured Mastiff Sausage on Lick the Plate and you will just have to trust me on this one. These guys do amazing sausage and it’s such a natural from a food truck.

SnoCal is just what you might think it is, mobile shaved ice. Perfect for the humid weather we’ve been having at the beach and a nice refreshing treat after chowing down on pizza, Mexican food and sausage. And they are an environmentally aware shave ice at that. The flower cups they use are made from PLA plastic, which is made from a renewable resource of corn. They not only have a nice lip to keep you clean but they are 100 percent biodegradable.

And what would an event like this be without a local brewery providing liquid refreshments? Culture Brewing Company has come through big by donating beer that I’m thinking will go great with most of what I mentioned above. Culture is brewed in Solana Beach and they have a fun tasting room on Cedros that is a great place to stop before a show at the Belly Up.

And finally, they have a great lineup of live music that includes Kingsland, Angie Keilhauer and Imagery Machine.

Bottom line is that this is going to be a fun event definitely not limited to pet owners. Check out what HANA Fund is all about at and get out to this event Monday, Aug. 14 in the parking lot of Lou’s Records on Coast Highway 101 in Leucadia.