If you’re a Beastie Boys fan, chances are you know how much the boys like food. And what’s “cheaper than a hot dog with no mustard”? FREE. In response to Hurricane Sandy's devastation of the Rockaways, Beastie Boy Michael "Mike D" Diamond and his restaurateur friend Robert McKinley have partnered with the local community to bring the Rockaways free food.
Mike D told GOOD,
“Rob and I went out [to the Rockaways] very shortly after Sandy. We saw right away all these people living without any power, without any businesses being open, and therefore, no food. We saw the immediate need for warm food, but we didn’t have time to put together a long-term cohesive plan, we just had to react quickly. We quickly saw, to get a lot of people fed and to have something warm we needed a truck."
Thus, Rockaway Plate Lunch was born. To date, the truck has dished out over 19,000 “hearty and flavorful” meals including all your daily essentials - meat, veggies, and rice & beans-- with a side of hot sauce, please.
Now that the Rockaways are finally regaining traction after Sandy, Rockaway Plate Lunch hopes to revitalize the local economy by eventually employing residents to run the food truck. It’s not going to be easy to go from a free meal to a paid one, but Mike D and his associates are dedicated to helping ease the transition.
“Restaurants aren’t just about what happens in the kitchen: there’s social media, social media marketing there are so many careers that exist, but nobody has explained [it] to all of these kids. So we’re in the process of involving some of the kids we’ve met out there first hand, and some of the local pastors and clergymen as well as the Congressman’s office to figure out the best way to pool those resources. And if we can be part of a movement we can help inspire that kind of local tourism that’s going to mean a lot for their economy out there.”
For more information on how you can help, visit Waves for Water.
Images via GOOD.