CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - The NBA All-Star is in full swing in Charlotte. The last time it was in Charlotte was back in 1991. Dave Cook, owner of Dave and Fran’s, remembers the event. He worked with the NBA to prepare food when the event was at the Coliseum.
He is grateful he is still in business and is working the NBA All Star again 28 years later.
“I think they’ll be back here in 28 to 30 years again,” Cook said. “But I think this will be my last one.”
Cook says a lot has changed since 1991. First he says the menu has changed. This year it’s fried chicken wings, fish, funnel cake and red velvet cake. Cook says he ordered about 500 lbs of wings and about 500 lbs of fish for this year’s festivities. He says back in 1991 the menu was different.
"It was grilled cheese," Cook said. "Grilled chicken pitas, Philly steak pita - things like that."
Another big change was diversity. Cook says back in 1991 he was the only black person working with the NBA when it comes to preparing food. This year things have changed. He says the NBA is focusing on the importance of diversity.
"You could always do better," Cook said. "But they have done a great job and made a sincere effort to be more inclusive and concentrate on diversity."
These days diversity has expanded and NBA has to think about a lot in order to be inclusive.
"Back in those days diversity was basically - you know maybe black," Cook said. "But now you got LGBT, disabled veterans."
Cook has been successful in the food business. He has taken his business to a Super Bowl, Golf Tournaments and to the US Open. He wants other people to have longevity and success. He give this advice.
"You got to believe in yourself," Cook said. “And don't look at the money. There are some events that I didn't make a dime in, but doing those events and put them on my resume meant more to me than any amount of money I could have made."
Cook’s business outside the Spectrum Center will stay open until midnight while the All-Star crowds are in town.