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PLATTSMOUTH – Saturday’s unrelenting heat caused a lower turnout at the annual Food Truck Wars on Main Street, but those who came felt it was worth it, according to a Chamber of Commerce spokeswoman.

“People said they still loved it,” said Cindy Cruse, chamber director. “I know our judges had a good time.”

The weather apparently forced several vendors to cancel their appearance, but for many who came, business was brisk to the very end, she added.

This was the third such event sponsored by the chamber and featured celebrities who judged the quality of food prepared by the vendors.

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts was one of them.

“I love it,” he said during the judging. “We’re having a great time.”

So was Scott Sheehan, owner of Anthony Picolo’s Mobile Venue.

“This is great,” he said. “When Cindy has an event I do it. She is such a great promoter.”

Rhonda Ritzman of Plattsmouth braved the heat and thinks highly of this event.

“It brings more people from out of town,” she said.

A new vendor this year was the Plattsmouth branch of Lions Clubs International. They served hotdogs and hamburgers because parents had requested those kind of “simple” food for their kids, the members said.

What’s more, all of the money raised, estimated to be in the hundreds, goes back to the community, they added.

For Sheehan, this is his third appearance. He began working for the now-closed Picolo Pete’s restaurant in Omaha at age 7.

“I started this about four years ago, about a year before the restaurant closed,” Sheehan said. “I got to keep the recipes alive, the family tradition alive.”

He goes to a large number of sites in Nebraska and Iowa, Sheehan said.

Other downtown businesses took advantage of the crowd by displaying their merchandise on the sidewalk. This included the Museum of Shadows.

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“It’s been busy today,” said Kaleigh Raterman, co-owner with her husband, Nate.

Obviously, these cooks came to sell their products and spread the word out about their business.

But, they also came to be judged on how well they’re doing in various categories.

Here are the various winners:

People’s Choice AwardSmokin’ Lefty’s BBQ

A Little Extra Award1st Place, The Rude Shrimp Co.

2nd Place, La Cabanita Taco Truck

3rd Place, Chaima’s African Cuisine

Back to the Basics Award1st Place, Mobile Grace Food Truck

2nd Place, Mosaic Pickle

3rd Place, Chaima’s African Cuisine

Uniquely Yours Award1st Place, The Rude Shrimp Co.

2nd Place, La Cabanita Taco Truck

3rd Place, Chaima’s African Cuisine

These weren’t the only winners.

Riley Fitzpatrick was crowned Miss Plattsmouth for 2019. She will represent the city at the Miss Cass County pageant at the Cass County Fair later this summer.

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