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Backyard Social, a new food truck concept planned for south Fort Myers, is heading toward the home stretch of final construction and should open by the end of August.  

The 9,000-square-foot structure at 16371 Corporate Commerce Way, near the northwest corner of Alico Road and Ben Hill Griffin Parkway, will have eight food trucks, said owners Mat Baum and John Mann.  

Inspired in part by Celebration Park in East Naples, which has nine food trucks, Baum and Mann bought the land for $1.19 million in November 2021.  

Since then, they have been planning the building and fine-tuning the concept. Each food truck will have a different theme and different food offerings.  

Mat Baum and John Mann are building Backyard Social in the northwest quadrant of Alico Road and Ben Hill Griffin Parkway in south Fort Myers.“You can come here multiple times a week and never eat the same thing, so that’s pretty cool,” said Baum, who owns 11 other restaurants, most of which are in Broward County. The Cypress Lake High School graduate sought to return to his roots with the Backyard Social concept, which could be replicated elsewhere down the road.  

“It was a lot of Mat and I going back and forth,” Mann said of fine-tuning the concept. “At first, we thought of making a big tiki hut or something like that. But now we’re a couple of years in the making, and this is where we’re at right now. I’m pretty excited we’re taking it to the next level.”  

Love Boat Ice Cream will be selling ice cream there as well. A bar will be in the middle of the building, which will have large fans to circulate the air of the indoor-outdoor facility. The restrooms and duck-pin bowling alley will be under air conditioning. There will be dartboards, cornhole, shuffleboard, other games and a stage for bands.  

Backyard Social is being built in the northwest quadrant of Alico Road and Ben Hill Griffin Parkway in south Fort Myers.“We’re going to have first-class entertainment,” Mann said. “We can fit hundreds of people over there with the band and stage. It’s an indoor-outdoor opportunity, but we’re going to have some big shows over here.”  

Backyard Social also will have street mural artist Ruben Ubiera on hand to decorate the exterior of the building.  

“It’s a great concept,” Mann said, “and we’re really excited about it.” 

To read more about Southwest Florida’s growing food truck scene, click here. 

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