Goodies Frozen Custard & Treats founder Brandon Byrd spent about three years looking for truck like Rudy. The rare 1957 Metro van—a mini version of his first dessert truck, Gigi—wasn't easy to come by. "If you do come upon them, they're in pretty rough shape," Byrd says. "They don't run. They're complete rust buckets. They've sat in a field for 30 years and now they have weeds and trees growing through the engine." But Byrd finally found one on Craigslist in Pennsylvania. The army green vehicle reportedly had come from Iowa, where it was once used to shuttle higher ranking officials around a military base. "I had to have it," Byrd says.
Now Byrd has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $35,000 to restore the van. It runs, but it still needs significant work, including new brakes, windows, rewiring, body work, and much more. He's nicknamed it Rudy after both Rudy Huxtable from the Cosby Show and the University of Notre Dame football player. Both represent big personalities and hearts in small packages. "He's rough right now," Byrd says of Rudy. "But he has such big personality and I can see that through all of the, let's say, ugliness."
When it's eventually complete, Rudy will serve frozen custard but will also have a greater emphasis on baked goods than its sister truck. (Goodies also has a frozen custard stand and soda shop in National Harbor.) Byrd envisions coffee and a variety of doughnuts in flavors like red velvet, chocolate, maple, and other seasonal flavors. There will also be peach cobbler, bread pudding, and cookies.
Byrd aims to have Rudy on the road by next spring. Check out the campaign at RestoreRudy.com.