Every city has its traditions. From parades to festivals to holidays, part of the comfort of a city is knowing its history and its future. Here in Madison, Wisconsin, we have a myriad of fun traditions. My favorite? The Fresh Cool Drinks Spring Roll Truck.

The small green mobile restaurant is a beloved staple of the University of Wisconsin’s Library Mall. However, in addition to exporting Michelin Star deserving spring rolls, the truck takes on another identity. That of our own Punxsutawney Phil. 

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The original Punxsutawney Phil is a groundhog whose one job is to check himself out as the sun hits his glistened groundhog body to see if he produces a shadow or not. If a shadow is seen, there are six more weeks of winter. If a shadow is not seen, we can expect an early spring. Sure, Groundhog Day was nearly two months ago, but the typical rules don’t apply to Wisconsin.

Fresh Cool Drinks works differently, but with the same message. The presence of the truck indicates the end of winter and the blossoming of spring. With the truck finally planting itself in its rightful spot at the epicenter of student life in-between the University Bookstore and Memorial Library — not an ad, just a fact — students are free to sport Bermuda shorts, play spike ball and attempt to get a tan in 50 degree weather. 

Spring roll cart offers ideal dining experience for busy UW students on a budgetThere are many characteristics that make up a unique community. Whether it’s the diversity of people, varied beliefs or a Read…

To say that Fresh Cool Drinks is the backbone of UW’s approach to the arrival of spring is an understatement, for it is so much more.

With each spring roll rolled, each smoothie smoothed, and each venmo venmoed, Tuy Anongdeth leads the student body fearlessly through rain or shine, midterms or finals, weekdays or weekends. Her glowing smile and fervor for avocado spring rolls inspires students of the past, present and future. We are more patient kind, and worldly people due to that food truck. 

With the truck rolling its handsome wheels onto the streets of campus, we students line up near and far to interact with the best campus tradition we know — the return of Tuy and the return of hatless heads.