Tacos and a zonkey in store as Fuel City nears opening in Haltom City

The new marquee at the soon-to-be opened Fuel City is only one sign of how things will be changing in Haltom City.

Set to open during the first two weeks of December, the convenience store extraordinaire at Haltom Road and Airport Freeway will sport its signature street tacos along with a menagerie that includes two baby buffaloes, two Longhorns, a donkey, a zebra and a “zonkey” — that’s half zebra, half donkey, said John Benda, the chain’s founder.

“It is all going good. I’m really really excited about it,” said Benda, a flashy showman who would rather you call his gas stations travel centers, destination spots and tourist attractions.

For those who don’t remember, Benda’s Fuel City stores — he has one in near downtown Dallas and another in Mesquite — sport not only cheap gasoline but an urban cowboy vibe that makes them a favorite, 24-hour hangout. His Dallas store is such a popular night-time hot spot that he has had to hire cops to direct traffic.

He has gussied up the Haltom City store with decorative stonework. Landscaping will soon be completed. It also has an outdoor patio with a garage door that can be opened and closed to allow for dining in all kinds of weather.

“People will be able to sit out there and watch the Cowboys game or come at two in the morning and eat a taco,” he said. . “It is going to be a lot of fun.”

Max B. Baker: 817-390-7714, @MaxbakerBB