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Texarkana couple serves tacos from converted school bus

October 11, 2018

TEXARKANA, Texas (AP) — Street food lovers everywhere have sampled tacos from classic food trucks, but in the Liberty-Eylau community just south of Texarkana, one couple is serving them up from their taco bus.

Lance and Stacee Lovell own and operate Lovell’s, which serves street tacos to the crowds that line up outside their converted school bus, even in the rain.

“I’m really shocked at how popular it got so fast, really,” she told the Texarkana Gazette .

They opened the bus for business in August, originally selling snow cones. Then, taco magic happened.

“We introduced the food two weeks later and since then, it’s just been nonstop,” Lance Lovell said. “She cooked tacos one night in the house and we had a bunch of leftovers, so we decided to bring tacos out here and people started telling people and it just started happening.”

Originally they sold snow cones from the bus in Nash next to Fiesta House, then Stacee became pregnant with their daughter, Journee. They took a break from the food business, then found the L-E location off U.S. Highway 59. The bus, 6464-6606 S. Lake Drive, is hard to miss, especially at night when the traffic lights mounted on the top are lit up, giving the evening signal they are open with hot tacos awaiting.

Customers have the option of flour or white corn tortillas, and each is filled with grilled marinated chicken, onion, cilantro and queso fresco. The taco plate, which consists of four tacos, is $7 and includes red or green sauce and a lime. Other options include the $5 taco on a bun, which features the chicken taco meat and grilled onions, melted queso fresco and white American cheese, all served on a sweet Hawaiian roll.

They also offer a cheesy smoked turkey sandwich on a Hawaiian roll, which has mesquite-smoked turkey with American white cheese. It is served with barbecue sauce and costs $5.

Their menu is rounded out with chips and soda in a can, which are $1 each. They also offer fresh-squeezed lemonade and a watermelon drink, which consists of crushed ice and fresh watermelon only, without added sugar.

“I discovered the watermelon drink when I was on the beach in Corpus Christi,” Lance said. “They were serving it from a taco truck and on a hot, sunny day, it was perfect. I thought it would work well here, too.” The lemonade and watermelon drinks are $3 each.

Stacee said they are still growing and are adjusting their menu for October. They will soon begin serving chicken quesadillas, which will have two 10-inch flour tortillas filled with grilled onions, bell peppers, fiesta cheese and sour cream sauce.

The couple said it’s been a learning process but that they’ve had fun doing it. Lance even makes the red sauce himself.

“The red sauce is secret sauce,” he said. “We make it from scratch. That’s my favorite. I eat it with everything in the house now.” While he wouldn’t divulge the recipe, he did say it included fire roasted tomatoes, chipotle and habanero peppers. A canopy-covered picnic table sits outside the bus for patrons to enjoy their food outdoors. Lance said they are thinking of renting the adjacent building for additional space.

“We may start renting it out customers can go in there and sit. I might put an oven and maybe even a pool table in there,” he said. “But that’s in the future.”

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Information from: Texarkana Gazette, http://www.texarkanagazette.com

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