Browsing articles in "food festivals"
Sep 30, 2014
Tina George

Dining News & Notes: October means food festivals

‘Tis the season for fall food festivals, and there sure are lots of ‘em this year. Here are a few:

The Taste of the Nation fundraiser for Share Our Strength returns to the Palms, featuring 35 local chefs and restaurants from the Country Club and BB Ristorante to Border Grill and Stripsteak. October 2, 7 p.m., $100-$125. Rain Nightclub, ce.strength.org.

LuckyRice Night Market returns to Cosmopolitan for an evening of Asian cuisine from chefs including Pichet Ong, Cédric Vongerichten and Miguel Trinidad, with local eats from China Poblano, Chada Thai, Sweets Raku and more. October 4, 8 p.m., $88-$150. Boulevard Pool, cosmopolitanlasvegas.com.

It’s not just a food event, but Wednesdays Downtown returns to the Fremont East Entertainment District this month, featuring a painters lounge, a silent disco, a collective happy hour at area bars and more. The food truck village will feature chefs John Courtney and Nicole Brisson popping up, as well as local trucks Dragon Grill, Truck-U Barbeque, Can’t Dutch This, Hummus Factory and Slidin’ Thru. October 8, 6 p.m.-midnight, free admission. FEED, fremonteast.com.

Wednesdays Downtown returns to the Fremont East Entertainment District this month.

Nathan Adelson Hospice’s 15th annual Wine Food Tasting Extravaganza offers samples of popular wines and cuisine plus music and silent and live auctions. October 9, 5:30 p.m., $75. Gaudin Motor Co., nahwine.auction-bid.org.

Communities in Schools of Nevada’s fourth annual Harvest for Hope features food from Cosmopolitan restaurants Blue Ribbon, STK, Comme Ça, Scarpetta, Wicked Spoon and more, plus a new fall cocktail from Cosmo chief mixologist Mariena Mercer. October 10, 5 p.m., $100-$350. Cashman Center, cisnevada.org/harvest-2014.

Red Dragon’s popular Foodie Fest has a new home this year: the Linq. Fifty food trucks will converge on the Strip, including newbies Me So Hungry, Dos Chinos, Cambalaches and Frach’s Fried Ice Cream. October 15-19, times vary, $10-$50. Linq, lasvegasfoodiefest.com.

The Epicurean Charitable Foundation’s 13th annual M.E.N.U.S. gala features a poolside dine-around preceding a concert by Zac Brown at the Grand Garden Arena, with snackage provided by Aureole, Crush, Gordon Ramsay Steak, Hakkasan, Public House, Sensi, Heritage Steak, Zenshin and more. October 17, 6 p.m., $600. MGM Grand, ecflv.org.

Five Guys Burgers Fries is among the new restaurants opening this month at Downtown Summerlin.

There’s plenty of speculation regarding the location(s) for the recently announced Wahlburgers expansion to Las Vegas. The Hingham, Massachusetts-based burger joint is owned by famous brothers Mark, Donnie and Paul Wahlberg and is the subject of its own reality show on AE, and a franchise agreement has three stores opening in Las Vegas in the next five years. One spot it will almost certainly not take? Downtown Summerlin, which opens this month and just recently announced it will be the home of the eighth Las Vegas location of Five Guys Burgers and Fries. Other recently announced restaurants for the 106-acre urban center are: Bonanno’s New York Pizzeria, California Pizza Kitchen, Earl of Sandwich, Grape Street Café Wine Bar, Marketplace, Moe’s Southwest Grill, MTO Café, Panda Express, Trattoria Reggiano, Gelato Messina, Lazy Dog Restaurant Bar, Pancho’s Mexican Restaurant, Pieology Pizzeria, Ribs Burgers, Rice Republic and Wonderland Bakery.

Chef Takeshi Omae’s wok-charred ramen is a study in complex flavors.

Just next door to Downtown Summerlin at Red Rock Resort, Mercadito is part of the national Tacos for Strength campaign beginning October 1. Chef Patricio Sandoval is inviting a variety of chefs to join him in creating unique tacos to support Share Our Strength and its mission to end childhood hunger, and you can help by eating those tacos. Various specialty tacos will be available throughout the month for lunch ($13.50) or dinner ($15.50) with a portion of proceeds going to SOS. Last year, Mercadito restaurants sold almost 3,000 Tacos for Strength.

Buzzy new restaurant Japanese Cuisine by Omae is also doing some fundraising. Through the end of October, the tiny restaurant by Michelin-starred chef Takeshi Omae will be open for a special ramen lunch with some proceeds going to an orphanage house in Kumamoto, Japan, where Omae stayed briefly as a youth. Since his recent relocation to Las Vegas to open his “dream” restaurant, Omae is unable to return to the orphanage for its annual fundraiser in November. Lunch reservations are available online here.

Recommended Reading

Sep 26, 2014
Tina George

Bikes, knights, food and more: A guide to NYC’s fall festivals

High season for the fall festivals is upon us. Whether your preference is hot food or cool suits of armor, motorcycles or buses, or just a ton of good music, it’s time to plan a weekend full of food and fun. Here’s a look at eight great fests this weekend.

Art your engines!

Get your motor running: Coney Island hosts the Tattoo Motorcycle Festival.Photo: Photo by Tamara Beckwith/NY Post; Model: APM Models NYC; Hair and makeup: T. Cooper

30th Annual Coney Island Tattoo Motorcycle Festival

Not everyone gets a tattoo at this fest, but Dick Zigun, who co-founded it in 1985, plans to add to his body-art collection during the annual event. “I don’t like getting tattoos, but I love having them,” he says. Coney Island USA, which also runs the Mermaid Parade and the Circus Sideshow, started the festival long before the boardwalk got a face-lift and when tattoos were still illegal. “Now everyone and their mother has a tattoo,” says Zigun. But not everyone has wildly customized hot rod cars or motorcycles, which will be on display Saturday and Sunday. Along with the unreeling of the film “C.C. Company” (starring Joe Namath and Ann-Margret) and contests for best motorcycles and tats (at the Coney Island Museum), it’s the last weekend of the year to see the sword swallower, fire eater, snake charmer and others perform at the Circus Sideshow. “It’s astonishing!” says Zigun.

Details: Saturday and Sunday on West 12th Street between Surf Avenue and Bowery; noon to “late”; motorcycle show, free; admission to other events and hours vary; coneyisland.com.

Busman’s holiday

Go to Downtown Brooklyn for the 21st Annual Bus Festival.Photo: Patrick Cashin/MTA

21st Annual Bus Festival

Kids get to climb aboard more than a dozen vintage buses parked in Downtown Brooklyn while parents can wax nostalgic over the old vehicles, such as Bus 2969. That may sound like just any other number, but it’s the bus Jackie Gleason, as Ralph Kramden, drove along Madison Avenue on “The Honeymooners.” To the moon, Alice! Other festival “guests” include “Betsy,” a doubledecker bus that ran from 1931 until 1953, and, great for kids, the Tunnel Wrecker, a huge emergency truck for removing broken-down vehicles from tunnels. From the more recent past, check out Bus 2185, a k a the 9/11 bus. “This was parked on Church Street across from the World Trade Center and badly damaged,” says Transit Museum spokesperson Eli Rumpf. “The MTA decided to restore it rather than scrap it. It has a big American flag on the side.”

Details: Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Boerum Place between State Street and Atlantic Avenue, Downtown Brooklyn; free; mta.info/mta/museum/

Knight time

Visit the Middle Ages in Upper

30th Annual Medieval Festival

If you’ve been jonesing for “Game of Thrones,” this fest — which brings the Middle Ages to life with music, dance, puppet shows and more — may help you. And where else can you see jousting in the city? “The lances don’t kill anybody, but we’ve had a few jousters who have gone to the emergency room,” says Dennis Reeder, festival producer. Costumed performers also wander through the crowd, entertaining with stories, juggling, magic or songs. At a re-created medieval market town, watch blacksmiths, calligraphers and potters at work, and try medieval-like food, such as turkey legs and soup in bread bowls. “We had authentic medieval food at the first one, but no one ate it. It had no sugar and weird spices,” says Reeder.

Details: Sunday, 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.; the Cloisters, Fort Tryon Park; free; whidc.org/festival

All fired up

Things heat up at the Chili Pepper Festival.Photo: Brian Zak

Chile Pepper Festival

With red-hot culinary treats and spicy music from around the world, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s 22nd annual Chile Fest promises a feast for all the senses. “It’s like a block party,” says Anita Jacobs, BBG’s director of public programs. “Everyone is dancing. You can catch a performance, then grab a beer and have a food tasting.” The eats may be local, but they have international flavors from Thailand, Korea, India, Senegal and more. Try the chocolate-chile treats, along with a spicy chocolate frozen-yogurt sandwich that Park Slope yogurt shop Culture created for the pepper party. That, says Jacobs, reflects the “local, personal feel” of the festival, which boasts more than 45 vendors. Also on tap: farm stands selling peppers, kids activities, tours of BBG’s own chile plants as well as fire breathers and sword swallowers. Music includes the Afro-soul of Alidu and the Balkan beats of Tipsy Oxcart.

Details: Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Brooklyn Botanic Garden, 150 Eastern Parkway; $20 adults, free for kids under 12; bbg.org/chilepepperfestival.

Gigantic antic

Brooklyn’s mile-long Atlantic Antic runs through four different neighborhoods.Photo: Tom Callan/Atlantic Avenue LDC

40th Annual Atlantic Antic

In 1974, Brooklyn small-business owners Howard Lewis and Harry Reid wanted to make Atlantic Avenue shine — and help a slumping economy. So they founded the Atlantic Antic, long before Barclays Center and the Brooklyn Bridge Park were a twinkle in any developer’s eye. Once just four blocks long, the Antic now spans four neighborhoods and travels nearly a mile along Atlantic Avenue. The humongous block party explodes with 12 stages of dance, music and other performances (such as the Windsor Terrors, Popa Chubby and the Brooklyn Ballet), 100 local merchants and 400 other craft, food and exhibition vendors. Children’s activities include performances (such as Liam the magician and Rolie Polie Guacamole) on two family stages, plus pony rides. “Honestly, I don’t have a favorite part,” says Tammy Ben-Eliezer-Baxter, executive director of the Atlantic Avenue Local Development Corporation (AALDC). “Seeing the whole thing take life and come together is an amazing view. I see the empty street in the morning, then the hundreds of thousands of people in the afternoon.”

Details: Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.; Atlantic Avenue from Hicks Street to Fourth Avenue; atlanticave.org/ atlantic-antic/

On the waterfront

Look for work such as Megan Marlatt’s “The Big Head Brigade,” which popped up in Dumbo at year’s fest.Photo: Megan Marlatt

18th Annual DUMBO Arts Festival

Dumbo’s come a long way since the inaugural Under the Bridge Festival (since renamed) in 1997. “I used to come here in the ’90s as a college student. It was like the Wild West, a ghost town,” recalls festival director Lisa Kim. “It had a rough waterfront area, not the beautiful one it is today. Art activated the neighborhood.” With more than 300 artists across six blocks and the waterfront, as well as 100 open studios and 50 galleries, art is everywhere. “Some of it will be moving around,” says Kim. One such work is Thomas Stevenson’s “Disco Transformer,” where a typical street-vendor cart is transformed into a disco party, with DJs and all! Some artists are installing work on construction walls in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Details: Saturday, noon to 9 p.m.; Sunday noon to 6 p.m.; 1 Main St., at Plymouth Street; free; dumboartsfestival.com

Food flight

Get your fill at Tastes NYC.Photo: Robert A. Ripps

Tastes NYC

Flats are better than heels for navigating the old-world cobblestone streets of the Meatpacking District for Tastes NYC’s seventh annual food extravaganza. Twenty area chefs will offer yummy treats, for a cause — all proceeds benefit the NYC’s Lab School for Collaborative Studies. Feast on Peter Luger-style pizza from Heartwood, topped with braised short ribs, spinach and horseradish, or French gougères (a k a cheese puffs) from Bakehouse. “It’s almost risk-free,” says co-chair Joanne Satin of the fest. “The samplings are small and easy to share.” Satin is also excited about Sweet Corner Bakeshop’s sea-salt chocolate chip cookies, and says Mighty Quinn’s barbecue pulled-brisket sandwich is “to die for.” Deejays and raffles add to the festive (and alcohol-free) atmosphere.

Details: Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m.; Gansevoort Plaza (one block south of the Highline); General Tasting Card (6 tastes), $40; tastesnyc.org

Across the river

Hoboken Fall Arts Music Festival

Darlene LovePhoto: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

It’s worth taking the PATH train to see joyous singer Darlene Love headline the 21st edition of this annual festival. With performers on three stages and street cafes from local restaurants, Washington Street will be lined with fun. The fest includes more than 300 artists and crafters, and a special kids section and stage. The dozen-plus musical acts include the sizzling Frankie Morales and the Mambo of the Times Orchestra, Harmonica Lewinskies (a blues and soul band) and kids’ music such as “kindie band” Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam.

Details: Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Washington Street between Observer Highway and Seventh Street; hobokennj.org; free; Darlene Love is slated to perform at 4:30 p.m.

Recommended Reading

Sep 25, 2014
Tina George

A Feast for Foodies: Top Autumnal Irish Food Festivals

From Kinsale to Dingle, Galway to Kilkenny, go discover and enjoy some of our oldest food festivals.

Lucinda O’Sullivan

Published 21/09/2014 | 02:30

  • 0 Comments
  • Share

Student chef Liadan Sheehy, at the launch of the Dingle Food Festival, which takes place from October 3-5. Front row, from left, Jerry Kennedy, butcher; Jim McCarthy, restauranteur; Niall O Conchuir, chef; Derek O’Connor, veg grower; back row, Clevlio Romirea, fisherman; Mark Murphy, Jean Marie Vaireaux, Martin Bealin, Jill Burton, all chefs; Timmy Brick, milkman; Thomas Kavanagh, bee keeper. Photo: Don MacMonagle

At the tastiest launch ever for the 8th Savour Kilkenny Food Festival 2014 (24th-27th October) were Derbhilia Coogan, the newly signed Kilkenny model with John Casablancas Model Management in Canada, Kilkenny Rose, Vera McGrath and Miss Kilkenny Sarah Jan

This is my favourite time of year. The weather is still mellow and we have a great series of food festivals around the country up to the end of October.

‘;
}

s += ‘

Ads by Google

‘;

if (google_ads[0].bidtype == “CPC”) {
google_adnum = google_adnum + google_ads.length;
}

s += ‘

‘;
document.write(s);
return;
}

window.google_adnum = window.google_adnum || null;

google_ad_client = “ca-pub-9024837700129787″;
google_ad_output = “js”;
google_ad_type = “text”;

google_ad_channel = ’2344944210,2822426849′;

google_max_num_ads = ’2′;

google_skip = window.google_adnum; /* insert this snippet for each ad call */

In fact, you could roll along gently for the next few weeks visiting different parts of the country each weekend, be it along the newly declared Wild Atlantic Way, via the Gourmet Capital of Ireland Kinsale, Fungi the dolphin in Dingle, the City of the Tribes, or bask in the heritage of the former medieval capital of Ireland – Kilkenny. On your travels, you will meet new and long-standing food producers and just generally encounter people with a common interest in food, wine and conviviality. I can promise you that with some mouth-watering morsels, a glass or three of wine and a good bit of crack, you will go home revitalized.

The incredible 10th Kinsale Arts Festival is currently running until September 28, incorporating Food Words, in both a humorous and more serious light, including a discussion, Banter with Sully – of Cully Sully – and Kieran Murphy of Murphy’s Ice Cream. The Domestic Godless trio of artists, also appearing at Kinsale Arts Week, operate with an irreverent disregard for current fashions and culinary trends. So think of Sea Urchin Pot Noodle, Foot Mouth Terrine at their Canaliculus Purgamentorum installation at O’Herlihy’s Townhouse until Wednesday. See kinsaleartsfestival.com

The Galway Oyster Festival will be celebrating its 60th birthday next weekend from September 25-28 and the festival hub this year will be located near the Spanish Arch at the heart of Galway city. The Galway Oyster Festival was started in September 1954 by Brian Collins, who was the then Manager of the Great Southern Hotel on Eyre Square (now Hotel Meyrick), with an attendance of only 34 guests feasting on dozens of oysters.

Since then, the festival has welcomed over half a million visitors, who have consumed more than 3m oysters, washed down with Champagne and stout whilst listening to some of the best musicians in Ireland. It has played host to over 300 international contenders vying to take honours in the World Oyster Opening Championship. Throughout the three-day annual festival, a host of great events will take place including a seafood trail in the city’s restaurants and ‘oyster hot spots’ in local bars. The National Oyster Opening Championships take place on Friday night, before the Oyster Olympics on Saturday. The ‘food village’ will gather at the Festival Marquee with an intimate selection of Galway restaurants serving locally sourced ingredients and seafood. Revellers can enjoy the Masquerade Mardi Gras, which kicks off at 8pm on Saturday night and on Sunday, Feile Na Mara, for all the family, will be happening in the Festival Village. See galwayoysterfestival.com

Also taking place next weekend is the 3rd Macroom Food Festival, which takes place over three days. It kicks off on Friday evening with an official opening and ‘An Artisan Affair’ at the Riverside Park Hotel. On Saturday there will be daytime and evening Taste Trails around the town as well as cookery demos. The young folk are well catered for here too with a fancy dress at the GAA clubhouse, followed by a puppet show at the Briery Gap and a schools cook-off on the Square on Sunday at 3.30pm. On Sunday, if last year is anything to go by, their Monster Outdoor Market on the Square will be ‘savage’. See macroomfestival.com

Having been voted the No.1 Foodiest Town in Ireland earlier this year, Dingle will showcase its many culinary delights at the hugely popular Dingle Peninsula Food Festival, October 3-5, leaving visitors in no doubt as to why the town won this much coveted title. This year’s festival will kick off with the first ever Dingle Culinary Pentathlon, which will see professional culinary schools from all over the country test their athletic and cookery skills to the limit. To win this cook-off, students will have to race through the town, picking up a ‘blind’ basket of ingredients en route, that they will then use to create a two-course lunch in under an hour, on which the results will then be judged. To celebrate the festival’s 8th anniversary, the annual Taste Trail will now take in 80 establishments around the town; Derry Clarke, who has created the ultimate Dingle Pie, will be raising funds for charity at Liam O’Neill’s art gallery, while chilled Cromane oysters will be served at Lord Baker’s, Dingle’s oldest pub.

Free demos and workshops include a mix of local and national chefs such as Martin Bealin of Dingle’s Global Village restaurant, which won Best Emerging Irish Cuisine at the RAI awards and Neven Maguire, voted the Best Chef in Ireland, who will make his first visit to the festival this autumn. There will also be street buskers, food-art installations, and a large craft beer and cider event at An Canteen restaurant. The weekend will also be choc-a-bloc with fun, free activities for children; including falconry, puppet shows, honey and chocolate-making demos, culinary tales in the park, and pizza making on the Big Blue Bus. A huge artisan food and wine market runs throughout the town, which also adds greatly to the festival atmosphere and fun, as well as useful information and lovely goodies to buy and take home.

The Festival also plays host to the final judging and presentation of the 7th annual Blas Na hEireann Awards, the ultimate accolade for Irish producers. With increased entry levels again this year, there will be much celebrating by the producers who win gold, silver and bronze medals in over 80 food and drink categories. The winners of the awards will be announced on the Saturday of the festival.See dinglefood.com

Kinsale Gourmet Festival is always a wow, run by the Kinsale Good Food Circle, and it takes place the following weekend from October 10-12. It has been running for an incredible 38 years and people meet up with many old friends at each event. The official opening and Champagne Reception this year is followed by A Taste of West Cork Dining Experience, which includes a five-course menu in member restaurants around the town. Saturday is always a fantastic day with the Mad Hatter’s Taste of Kinsale kicking off at 11.30 am with a sparkling reception, followed by an Alice in Wonderland-themed foodie walking tour of four tasting venues, where the restaurants set up the most amazing food and wine stations. You have to learn to pace yourself for this event. Over the years, it is always easy to pick out the first-timers who overindulge at the first venue and fall well before the final fence! The hats worn by the crowd are almost as amazing as the food – it’s just a fantastic fun day.

The grand finale of the festival is the Fruits de Mer luncheon on Sunday, where the Good Food Circle restaurateurs and chefs present a stunning four-course lunch with lobster, oysters, crabs and prawns in abundance. See kinsalerestaurants.com

That leads us on to the October bank holiday weekend, when the Savour Kilkenny Festival of Food will be kicking off on October 24 and running until October 27. There is an enormous programme of events lined up here for all ages from the Food Market on the Saturday and Sunday, featuring the best of local, regional and national food producers, to the Easy Food baking competition where you can enter your cakes, cupcakes, breads and pastries to be judged by Dee Laffan and Gina Miltiadou of Easy Food, plus chef Edward Hayden and Rosanne Hewitt-Cromwell author of Like Mam Used To Bake. In association with Special Olympics Leinster, there will be cookery demos by chefs from top cookery schools, including Rory O’Connell from Ballymaloe, Kevin Dundon of Dunbrody, and the No Salt Chef, Brian McDermott, from Donegal. John The Restaurant Healy will be master of ceremonies for a fun cook-off between three of Ireland’s food critics. The Chef’s Table will be back, where chefs like Cormac Rowe and Ken Harker of Mount Juliet, plus Stephen Gibson of Dublin’s popular Pichet restaurant will share recipes and tricks of the trade.

Festival nights can be taken up with gourmet diners including a Black White Masquerade Dinner at the Michelin-starred Lady Helen Restaurant at Mount Juliet on Thursday, October 23, where diners will enjoy a 10-course tasting menu with a twist. Guests are asked to wear black and white and a colourful mask. Tickets cost €75, excluding wine. On Friday, October 24, at Anocht@Kilkenny Design Centre, they have a six-course seafood tasting menu prepared by Chef Paul Cullen and his team. Pascal Rossignol of Le Caveau has chosen the wines, which he will introduce on the night. Tickets cost €55, excluding wine.

Nearby at the City Bar Grill at the Kilkenny Hibernian Hotel, they will be paying tribute to the cow for giving us cheese, milk, ice-cream, yoghurt, roast beef, fillet steak, burgers and more, with a There’s Something About Dairy, which is three-course ‘udderly’ fabulous menu at €29.95, excluding wine.

Also on Friday, October 24, is a Tudor Evening at the Rivercourt Hotel. Actors in period costume will regale guests with tales of medieval Kilkenny, as they enjoy a five-course menu at €59, which includes wine and a pre-dinner mead reception.

The frolics continue over the weekend with various events from a Spud Hurl race, to Go Bonkers with Conkers, a Long Table Artisan Dinner in Bennettsbridge and a Wine Goose Chase. See savourkilkenny.com

Sunday Independent

Recommended Reading

Sep 25, 2014
Tina George

Food festivals this way come

Special to the AmNews

photo

Photo by Kysha Harris

Food Film Fest

photo

Photo by Kysha Harris

Dumplings at Food Film Fest

While the end of summer brings sadness to some for the loss of long, hot, carefree days, for others, it is the beginning of food festival season. Take a look at what’s happening.

Oct. 9-12: Indentita Golose, Eataly (@EatalyNY). Do you love Italian food? This is the place for you to learn and eat. The fifth annual event brings together 14 of Italy’s and New York’s most celebrated culinary chefs for a series of seminars ($125 per person) and two five-course dinners ($190 per person), with a portion of the proceeds going to the Food Bank (@FoodBank4NYC). Visit www.eataly.com/nyc-identita-golose-2014 for more details and tickets.

Oct. 16-19: Food Network New York City Wine and Food Festival (@NYCWFF), various locations. In its sixth year, this food festival is bringing back all of our favorite events, chefs and personalities while raising the bar with intriguing talks, modern cooking and, of course, more food to eat. There are still tickets available at www.nycwff.org. Don’t miss out!

Oct. 18-19: Oyster Festival, Oyster Bay, Long Island. Get those New York-raised oysters in your mouth at this admission free festival! Visit www.theoysterfestival.org for more details.

Oct. 29-Nov. 2: New York City Food Film Festival (@FoodFilmFest), various locations. Stop eating in the din of a flickering screen by yourself! Join hundreds of others as they taste what they see on the screen. Go to www.thefoodfilmfestival.com for details and tickets.

If you didn’t know, now you know! #NoExcuses.

Recommended Reading

Sep 24, 2014
Tina George

Food festivals in North Wales boost economy by £16m

Food festivals are boosting the sales of Welsh producers by more than £16m and helping support nearly 300 jobs.

As we enter the peak festival season the Business Post has investigated the economic impact of the increasingly popular events that are now fixed in the diaries of food lovers.

A report commissioned by the Welsh Government found the impact of the direct spend of 30 festivals across Wales was worth £7.3m to the economy.

Gwledd Conwy Feast, the second biggest festival in Wales after Abergavenny, saw the highest average spend at £28 per head at the festival, plus an extra £15 in the local area.

Last year it attracted in excess of 25,000 people and generated £1.4m for the local economy.

But this does include the long term impact with exhibitors reporting increases in sales due to attendance at the showcase events.

The Evaluation of Food Festivals supported by the Welsh Government report found the net additional spend hit £16.5m on the food and drink sector and £27m in the wider economy.

Despite the report concluding that the festivals were excellent value for money funding from the Welsh Government has fallen.

Jane Hughes, organiser of the festival, which takes place on October 25/26, said: “Since it started in 2004 we’ve seen some significant changes.

“There are many more food festivals than there were but the funding for them has declined substantially.

“We used to get 50% of the food festival costs from the Welsh government and that has gone down.

“In 2013 it dropped from £33,000 to £10,000, which is what we received this year. That amount depends on us having 75% of stalls from Wales. It costs £160,000 to run the event and several independent estimates suggest we generate £1.4m in revenue for the local community. That’s quite a substantial return on a £10k investment.”


 

“GCF is one of the few festivals that actually employs people. As far as we are aware, there’s just us and Abergavenny who employ people directly.

“We’re proud of that because it means the festival is supporting jobs throughout the year- as well as creating work for many suppliers during the event- but there is still a feeling among many that it should be run by volunteers. It would be impossible to operate like that with an event of this size and diversity.

“There is also the complexity of organising a festival in a medieval town that is bordered by a river and town walls. The experience we have grows every year and is important for the safety of the 25,000 visitors who come here over the festival weekend.

“We were very pleased to see that our event attracts the greatest percentage of visitors from outside of Wales. Not bad given that we are 70 miles away from the border.”

Last weekend saw the Mold Food Festival take place with the event attracting 13,000 people to the town.

Celebrity chef Bryn Williams was one of the stars of the show and he said festivals are wonderful opportunities for people to see the region’s top produce.

Speaking to the Daily Post before the event, he said: “People often say London is the heartbeat of the food industry, but I always say the heartbeat is really at smaller festivals like Mold where you can see the raw ingredients and see great things that you would never have dreamed could be found in North Wales.”

The popular Hamper Llangollen food festival has been named as one of the Top Ten food festivals in the UK and continues to grow in popularity.

The event last year won a special award from Llangollen Town Council for its contribution to the commercial life of the town.

It’s estimated the festival pumps nearly £400,000 into the local economy every year with £156,000 being spent at the event and a further £234,000 being spent in the town and the surrounding area.

This year’s festival, October 18/19, is being supported by Cadwyn Clwyd whose contribution came via the Rural Development Fund for Wales 2007-2013, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the Welsh Government

Robert Price, Cadwyn Clwyd’s agri-food project officer, said: “The location of the Pavilion is absolutely spectacular – I can’t imagine that any other food festival in the UK has a more beautiful setting. It’s also brilliant news for the local economy. If you buy from a local producer, all that money is recycled through the local economy and that sustains employment in our rural areas.”

Chair Colin Loughlin said: “The festival has gone from strength to strength since it was taken over by a local committee in 2011.

“We have a wonderful array of fantastic food producers clustered in the area and the festival is the perfect shop window for them. We’re making a positive contribution the local economy. “Hamper Llangollen is celebrating its 17th anniversary this year and is firmly and rightly established as a major highlight in the UK’s culinary calendar.”

One of the new kids on the block is the Menai Seafood Festival, with the second event taking place earlier this month, which organisers say pumped more than £300,000 into the local economy on Anglesey.

The free, three-day event in Menai Bridge showcased the abundance of seafood off the shores of Anglesey.

Organiser David Evans, from Dylan’s Restaurant said: “We extended the event to three days, after last year’s inaugural festival proved so successful. We are very grateful to the support of the local community, especially companies such as Peninsula Home Improvements for their sponsorship, which helped the event go ahead. The festival will be a big boost to the local area and really showcase the wonderful seafood that’s on offer here.”

Lorraine Grayson, a director of Peninsula Home Improvements, said: “It works extremely well on a culinary level and it transformed Anglesey into the seafood capital of the UK for three days. Importantly, too, it generated a major economic boost for the area with an estimated £315,000 being spent in the locality by people attending the festival.”

See our list of 10 top North Wales food festivals.

Recommended Reading

Sep 23, 2014
Tina George

18 of the Most Mouth-Watering Food Festivals Across America (PHOTOS)

1 / 18

Hawaii Food Wine Festival: Honolulu, Hawaii. In 2015, the Hawaii Food Wine Festival will mark the fifth anniversary of their “premier epicurean destination event in the Pacific,’ Sept. 4 – 13. (Photo by Hawaii Food Wine Festival/Facebook)

Food has quickly become America’s favorite guilty pleasure. From an entire Instagram genre to a category of reality competitions (with Gordon Ramsay at the helm), some would argue that food has ousted baseball as America’s favorite pastime. 

Where once the only things that could attract masses of Americans out to brave the elements were big sporting events, now people looking for a culinary delight are willing to trudge out in the rain, snow or sleet to experience some great food.

Here, we bring you the best of America’s food festivals, held in small towns and big cities alike. Click through the slideshow above to see if the festival you love makes the list.

(MORE: Best Cities for Music)


Recommended Reading

Sep 23, 2014
Tina George

Feast of oh-so fabulous food festivals

From Kinsale to Dingle, Galway to Kilkenny, go discover and enjoy some of our oldest food festivals

Lucinda O’Sullivan

Published 21/09/2014 | 02:30

  • 0 Comments
  • Share

Student chef Liadan Sheehy, at the launch of the Dingle Food Festival, which takes place from October 3-5. Front row, from left, Jerry Kennedy, butcher; Jim McCarthy, restauranteur; Niall O Conchuir, chef; Derek O’Connor, veg grower; back row, Clevlio Romirea, fisherman; Mark Murphy, Jean Marie Vaireaux, Martin Bealin, Jill Burton, all chefs; Timmy Brick, milkman; Thomas Kavanagh, bee keeper. Photo: Don MacMonagle

At the tastiest launch ever for the 8th Savour Kilkenny Food Festival 2014 (24th-27th October) were Derbhilia Coogan, the newly signed Kilkenny model with John Casablancas Model Management in Canada, Kilkenny Rose, Vera McGrath and Miss Kilkenny Sarah Jan

This is my favourite time of year. The weather is still mellow and we have a great series of food festivals around the country up to the end of October. In fact, you could roll along gently for the next few weeks visiting different parts of the country each weekend, be it along the newly declared Wild Atlantic Way, via the Gourmet Capital of Ireland Kinsale, Fungi the dolphin in Dingle, the City of the Tribes, or bask in the heritage of the former medieval capital of Ireland – Kilkenny. On your travels, you will meet new and long-standing food producers and just generally encounter people with a common interest in food, wine and conviviality. I can promise you that with some mouth-watering morsels, a glass or three of wine and a good bit of crack, you will go home revitalized.

‘;
}

s += ‘

Ads by Google

‘;

if (google_ads[0].bidtype == “CPC”) {
google_adnum = google_adnum + google_ads.length;
}

s += ‘

‘;
document.write(s);
return;
}

window.google_adnum = window.google_adnum || null;

google_ad_client = “ca-pub-9024837700129787″;
google_ad_output = “js”;
google_ad_type = “text”;

google_ad_channel = ’2344944210,2822426849′;

google_max_num_ads = ’2′;

google_skip = window.google_adnum; /* insert this snippet for each ad call */

The incredible 10th Kinsale Arts Festival is currently running until September 28, incorporating Food Words, in both a humorous and more serious light, including a discussion, Banter with Sully – of Cully Sully – and Kieran Murphy of Murphy’s Ice Cream. The Domestic Godless trio of artists, also appearing at Kinsale Arts Week, operate with an irreverent disregard for current fashions and culinary trends. So think of Sea Urchin Pot Noodle, Foot Mouth Terrine at their Canaliculus Purgamentorum installation at O’Herlihy’s Townhouse until Wednesday. See kinsaleartsfestival.com

The Galway Oyster Festival will be celebrating its 60th birthday next weekend from September 25-28 and the festival hub this year will be located near the Spanish Arch at the heart of Galway city. The Galway Oyster Festival was started in September 1954 by Brian Collins, who was the then Manager of the Great Southern Hotel on Eyre Square (now Hotel Meyrick), with an attendance of only 34 guests feasting on dozens of oysters.

Since then, the festival has welcomed over half a million visitors, who have consumed more than 3m oysters, washed down with Champagne and stout whilst listening to some of the best musicians in Ireland. It has played host to over 300 international contenders vying to take honours in the World Oyster Opening Championship. Throughout the three-day annual festival, a host of great events will take place including a seafood trail in the city’s restaurants and ‘oyster hot spots’ in local bars. The National Oyster Opening Championships take place on Friday night, before the Oyster Olympics on Saturday. The ‘food village’ will gather at the Festival Marquee with an intimate selection of Galway restaurants serving locally sourced ingredients and seafood. Revellers can enjoy the Masquerade Mardi Gras, which kicks off at 8pm on Saturday night and on Sunday, Feile Na Mara, for all the family, will be happening in the Festival Village. See galwayoysterfestival.com

Also taking place next weekend is the 3rd Macroom Food Festival, which takes place over three days. It kicks off on Friday evening with an official opening and ‘An Artisan Affair’ at the Riverside Park Hotel. On Saturday there will be daytime and evening Taste Trails around the town as well as cookery demos. The young folk are well catered for here too with a fancy dress at the GAA clubhouse, followed by a puppet show at the Briery Gap and a schools cook-off on the Square on Sunday at 3.30pm. On Sunday, if last year is anything to go by, their Monster Outdoor Market on the Square will be ‘savage’. See macroomfestival.com

Having been voted the No.1 Foodiest Town in Ireland earlier this year, Dingle will showcase its many culinary delights at the hugely popular Dingle Peninsula Food Festival, October 3-5, leaving visitors in no doubt as to why the town won this much coveted title. This year’s festival will kick off with the first ever Dingle Culinary Pentathlon, which will see professional culinary schools from all over the country test their athletic and cookery skills to the limit. To win this cook-off, students will have to race through the town, picking up a ‘blind’ basket of ingredients en route, that they will then use to create a two-course lunch in under an hour, on which the results will then be judged. To celebrate the festival’s 8th anniversary, the annual Taste Trail will now take in 80 establishments around the town; Derry Clarke, who has created the ultimate Dingle Pie, will be raising funds for charity at Liam O’Neill’s art gallery, while chilled Cromane oysters will be served at Lord Baker’s, Dingle’s oldest pub.

Free demos and workshops include a mix of local and national chefs such as Martin Bealin of Dingle’s Global Village restaurant, which won Best Emerging Irish Cuisine at the RAI awards and Neven Maguire, voted the Best Chef in Ireland, who will make his first visit to the festival this autumn. There will also be street buskers, food-art installations, and a large craft beer and cider event at An Canteen restaurant. The weekend will also be choc-a-bloc with fun, free activities for children; including falconry, puppet shows, honey and chocolate-making demos, culinary tales in the park, and pizza making on the Big Blue Bus. A huge artisan food and wine market runs throughout the town, which also adds greatly to the festival atmosphere and fun, as well as useful information and lovely goodies to buy and take home.

The Festival also plays host to the final judging and presentation of the 7th annual Blas Na hEireann Awards, the ultimate accolade for Irish producers. With increased entry levels again this year, there will be much celebrating by the producers who win gold, silver and bronze medals in over 80 food and drink categories. The winners of the awards will be announced on the Saturday of the festival.See dinglefood.com

Kinsale Gourmet Festival is always a wow, run by the Kinsale Good Food Circle, and it takes place the following weekend from October 10-12. It has been running for an incredible 38 years and people meet up with many old friends at each event. The official opening and Champagne Reception this year is followed by A Taste of West Cork Dining Experience, which includes a five-course menu in member restaurants around the town. Saturday is always a fantastic day with the Mad Hatter’s Taste of Kinsale kicking off at 11.30 am with a sparkling reception, followed by an Alice in Wonderland-themed foodie walking tour of four tasting venues, where the restaurants set up the most amazing food and wine stations. You have to learn to pace yourself for this event. Over the years, it is always easy to pick out the first-timers who overindulge at the first venue and fall well before the final fence! The hats worn by the crowd are almost as amazing as the food – it’s just a fantastic fun day.

The grand finale of the festival is the Fruits de Mer luncheon on Sunday, where the Good Food Circle restaurateurs and chefs present a stunning four-course lunch with lobster, oysters, crabs and prawns in abundance. See kinsalerestaurants.com

That leads us on to the October bank holiday weekend, when the Savour Kilkenny Festival of Food will be kicking off on October 24 and running until October 27. There is an enormous programme of events lined up here for all ages from the Food Market on the Saturday and Sunday, featuring the best of local, regional and national food producers, to the Easy Food baking competition where you can enter your cakes, cupcakes, breads and pastries to be judged by Dee Laffan and Gina Miltiadou of Easy Food, plus chef Edward Hayden and Rosanne Hewitt-Cromwell author of Like Mam Used To Bake. In association with Special Olympics Leinster, there will be cookery demos by chefs from top cookery schools, including Rory O’Connell from Ballymaloe, Kevin Dundon of Dunbrody, and the No Salt Chef, Brian McDermott, from Donegal. John The Restaurant Healy will be master of ceremonies for a fun cook-off between three of Ireland’s food critics. The Chef’s Table will be back, where chefs like Cormac Rowe and Ken Harker of Mount Juliet, plus Stephen Gibson of Dublin’s popular Pichet restaurant will share recipes and tricks of the trade.

Festival nights can be taken up with gourmet diners including a Black White Masquerade Dinner at the Michelin-starred Lady Helen Restaurant at Mount Juliet on Thursday, October 23, where diners will enjoy a 10-course tasting menu with a twist. Guests are asked to wear black and white and a colourful mask. Tickets cost €75, excluding wine. On Friday, October 24, at Anocht@Kilkenny Design Centre, they have a six-course seafood tasting menu prepared by Chef Paul Cullen and his team. Pascal Rossignol of Le Caveau has chosen the wines, which he will introduce on the night. Tickets cost €55, excluding wine.

Nearby at the City Bar Grill at the Kilkenny Hibernian Hotel, they will be paying tribute to the cow for giving us cheese, milk, ice-cream, yoghurt, roast beef, fillet steak, burgers and more, with a There’s Something About Dairy, which is three-course ‘udderly’ fabulous menu at €29.95, excluding wine.

Also on Friday, October 24, is a Tudor Evening at the Rivercourt Hotel. Actors in period costume will regale guests with tales of medieval Kilkenny, as they enjoy a five-course menu at €59, which includes wine and a pre-dinner mead reception.

The frolics continue over the weekend with various events from a Spud Hurl race, to Go Bonkers with Conkers, a Long Table Artisan Dinner in Bennettsbridge and a Wine Goose Chase. See savourkilkenny.com

Sunday Independent

Recommended Reading

Sep 22, 2014
Tina George

Five cool California food festivals to visit in September

After Labor Day, California hunkers down for wine harvests and food festivals around the state. Spend time tasting and sipping at these five events near and far that make a nice weeklong or weekend getaway.

lRelated Plan now for a Christmas journey to the faux North Pole or Paris
Travel News DealsPlan now for a Christmas journey to the faux North Pole or ParisSee all related

–Sacramento’s Farm to Fork Celebration Sept. 13-28 starts off on a poignant and important note. The Farm to Every Fork dinner Sept. 13 invites guests to buy a meal for themselves ($150 per person) and another for someone in need. The idea is to help feed the area’s hungry, and proceeds from the dinner made by local chefs go to local charities. There are mini fests within this event: a Legends of Wine evening at the state Capitol on Sept. 18; special Restaurant Weeks events; and the free daylong festival Sept. 27 that offers tastings and samples of food grown within 350 miles of the city.

Info: Farm to Fork Festival

–Log sawing, stein toting and yodel contests? It’s the 44th annual Oktoberfest in Big Bear Lake, Calif.,  Sept. 13 to Oct. 25. Two authentic polka bands — Goldeizen Band from Bavaria and Aalbachtal Express from southern Germany — will be featured this year as well as a one-time Oktoberfest Unplugged five-course pairing meal ($97 per person) for those who want to become immersed in the history of the fest. Sausages, German beer, pretzels and more will be served too. Adult general admission costs $7 to $28 depending on when you go.

Info: Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest, (909) 585-3000

–Craft beer meets the blues at the California Beer Festival in Ventura on Sept. 20 and 21. The event at Mission Park has different themes each day, but visitors can buy a pass for both. On Sept. 20, more than 130 craft brews will be featured along with food trucks and live music at Craft Beer Heaven. On Sept. 21, the mood changes to the Blues and BBQ Festival with artists such as Ana Popovic, Robben Ford and the Bottom Line. Fans who want an early start can purchase a VIP pass for $109 for both days that adds a Friday dinner where you sample six food-and-beer pairings and vote for your favorite. Tickets and passes range from $30 to $109.

Info: California Beer Festival

–Sip LBC is Long Beach’s first venture into the weeklong whirl of showcasing cocktails, wine and beer runs from Sept. 21-27. More than 20 bars and restaurants will be mixing up “562″ cocktails (think area code) for $5.62 and food and drink pairings for $18.88 (“an homage to the year Long Beach was founded,” a statement explains). Events include a mixology demo, Tequila Tuesday and sessions on gin and whiskeys from around the world. A Sip and the City Launch Party kicks off the fest from 4 to 7 p.m. on Sept. 14  at Sababa Restaurant and Lounge (6527 E. Pacific Coast Highway); $75 in advance, $85 at the door.

Info: Sip LBC

–Gourmet food and wine from San Luis Obispo and surrounding towns are showcased each year at the Sunset Savor the Central Coast, which is Sept. 25-28. “Top Chef” Fabio Viviani and San Francisco’s Tanya Holland are the featured talent this year at the festival, which includes cooking and wine seminars, an evening wine tasting at Hearst Castle and a Friday night Winemaker Dinner with Holland and others. The main events Sept. 27 and 28, during which visitors can enjoy unlimited wine and food tastings, are held at the historic Santa Margarita Ranch in Santa Margarita. Main event tickets start at $85 a person; cooking events and seminars cost extra.

Info: Sunset Savor the Central Coast

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times

Recommended Reading

Sep 22, 2014
Tina George

Fall festivals around New England

All across New England, small towns and large cities celebrate the harvest season with agricultural fairs, food festivals, craft markets, and oodles of entertainment for all ages. Put a sweater on and head out for fun at these events featuring pumpkins, amusement rides, fireworks, workshops, and more.

FRYEBURG, Maine

Agriculture and fun go hand in hand at the Fryeburg Fair (Sept. 28-Oct. 5). More than 3,000 animals are on display during the eight-day festival, including draft horses, beef and dairy cows, goats, llamas, poultry, rabbits, sheep, steers, oxen, and swine, all competing for a coveted blue ribbon.

Continue reading below

Varied events and competitions take place each day. Those who like action cheer competitors in the 4WD truck pull, tractor pull, and harness racing. At the Fireman’s Muster, trophies are awarded to teams in dry hose, wet hose, ball squirt, and mystery categories. Or try your hand at the skillet throw competition, open to ages 18 and up. On Woodmen’s Field Day, men and women compete in dozens of woods-related events, such as bucksaw, standing block, axe throw, tree felling, crosscut, and springboard.

Craft-lovers head to the fiber center for ongoing arts demonstrations of felting, weaving, dyeing, educational displays, and hands-on-learning. In the Agricultural Exhibition Center, check out baking, candy and Whoopie pie contests, and handcrafted items from woodworking to quilts.

Multiple venues offer live folk, bluegrass, jug band, and rock music by Maine performers (all included in the general admission price). For kids, the Hayseed Theater offers puppet and magic shows, storytellers and clowns, dancing and theater. On the midway, enjoy the Ferris wheel and other rides, sample cotton candy and freshly made doughnuts, and play games of skill to win prizes.

Fryeburg Fair, 207-935-3268, www.fryeburgfair.com. Adults $10, under 12 free.

TOPSFIELD

One of the oldest agricultural fairs in the United States, the Topsfield Fair (Oct. 3-13) is a descendant of the town’s 1820 Cattle Show. Today, fans of old-fashioned fun arrive for an 11-day extravaganza that this year includes live entertainment by Scottish trio North Sea Gas, 1970s rock group America, and country artists Confederate Railroad, Danielle Bradbery, and Kellie Pickler.

The fair retains its agricultural roots in many tents and barns located throughout the extensive grounds. The pig farm houses various breeds of swine. In the cattle barn, observe daily milking demonstrations. Check out prize-winning fruits and vegetables, decorate a pumpkin, visit the flower show, sheep show, goat show, petting farm, beekeeping and honey show, rabbit barn, and 4-H Club exhibitions. In Coolidge Hall, you’ll find cooking and baking demonstrations, and exhibits of handicrafts and art.

Other featured events include monster truck shows; the Axe Women Loggers of Maine (featuring “Lumberjills”); cavalry drills choreographed to music with 32 horses and riders of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; and more.

Arrive hungry and fill up on traditional fair foods such as fried Oreos and ice cream, or dine at concessions offering an array of Mexican, Chinese, Greek, Italian, BBQ, and seafood options.

Topsfield Fair, 978-887-5000, www.topsfieldfair.org. Pre-fair general admission $9; weekday-weekend-holiday $11-$15; three-day $25; under 8 with adult, free.)

TUNBRIDGE, Vt.

Got wool? Various breeds of sheep, goats, alpacas, rabbits, and other fiber-bearing animals will be on display — and for sale — in the animal barn at the 26th annual Vermont Sheep Wool Festival (Oct. 4-5).

Spread among several buildings and locations on the historic Tunbridge fairgrounds — with views of the foliage in surrounding mountains — the fair’s marketplace vendors will be selling all-things-fiber such as fleece; hand-dyed, organic wool yarns; handwoven wool blankets; rag rugs; wool hats; mittens and cotton towels; buttons; knitting and crochet patterns; plus handspinning and fibercrafting equipment and supplies, including skein winders, swifts, electric winders, spindles, and shuttles.

For those who want to learn about fiber arts, half- and full-day sessions ($55/$100) will be offered in spinning, dyeing, knitting, crocheting, needle felting, and weaving.

New this year: Vendor demonstrations in weaving, felting, thrumming, and drop spindling. Also, the festival is hosting the Eastern Cashmere Association Goat Show in the Cashmere Goat Barn, featuring exhibitions and competitive judging.

Camping is available for festival attendees at the Tunbridge Fairgrounds, Saturday night only (Reservations: tents $27; RVs $35).

Vermont Sheep Wool Festival, www.vtsheepandwoolfest.org. Adults $6, seniors $5, under 12, $1; two-day discount available.

BETHLEHEM, Conn.

If garlic is your thing, head to the Bethlehem Fairgrounds for the 10th annual Connecticut Garlic Harvest Festival (Oct. 11-12). The two-day event features garlic cooking demonstrations with executive chef Chris Eddy from the Winvian Resort, presentations on how to raise your own gourmet garlic, and a garlic-themed food court, where more than 20 vendors will sell specialties like deep-fried garlic, garlic marinated steak, and garlic pork sandwiches, garlic sausage with peppers and onions, and garlic ice cream. Or peruse many varieties of farm fresh garlic to take home for eating and planting.

Garlic Harvest Festival, Bethlehem, Conn.

Not a garlic fan? Dozens of vendors will be selling all manner of specialty and locally-made food products — with and without the pungent bulb — including olive oil, vinegar, pickles, hot sauce, mustard, peanut butter, cheeses, smoked meats, honey, cupcakes, cookies, cider doughnuts, roasted nuts, and more. Or check out the artisans’ stands for handmade crafts, such as candles, jewelry, pottery, tie-dyed clothing, photography, woodwork, wind chimes, glass art, birdhouses, and soaps.

Children can enjoy rides, games, a zip line, face painting, sand art, Kidz on the Go playscape, and the dinosaur dig. Live music will include Stumbling Murphy (Saturday 12:30-2:30 p.m.) and the Al Fenton Big Band (Sunday 12:30-1:30 p.m.).

Garlic and Harvest Festival, 203-266-7810, www.garlicfestct.com. Adults $6, seniors $5, under 12, $1.

WOONSOCKET, R.I.

The region’s largest family-friendly celebration of the autumn season, the three-day Autumnfest (Oct.11-13) features nonstop live and local singers, special headline acts, over 100 arts and crafts booths, a midway with amusement rides, gigantic fireworks display, beer garden (for 21 and older), and food court where you can sample a variety of foods from around the world including clam cakes, chowder, and French Canadian favorites such as dynamites. The Columbus Day parade (Monday 9 a.m.-noon) offers local and regional marching bands, floats, dignitaries and special celebrity-guest appearances.

The festival showcases Woonsocket, and its strong Franco-Quebec Canadian ethnic heritage and local culture. Started in 1978 as a morale booster for Woonsocket following the city’s recovery efforts from the Great Blizzard of 1978, it has grown to become one of the signature Blackstone Valley festivals each Columbus Day holiday weekend.

Autumnfest, Blackstone Valley Tourism, 401-724-2200, www.autumnfest.org. Free.

KEENE, N.H.

Bring your carved pumpkin to the Keene Pumpkin Festival (Oct. 18) and help the town

Keene Pumpkin Festival, New Hampshire.

defend its 2013 world record for the most carved and lighted jack-o’-lanterns in one place at one time. Last year’s tower-o-pumpkins record was 30,581, a number organizers hope to exceed this year. If you forget a pumpkin, you can pick one up and create your own design at the carving station — or adopt one at the Pumpkin Orphanage.

Activities start in the morning with a one-mile race through car-free, pumpkin-lined downtown streets, followed by an afternoon costume parade for kids. Try your hand at “Pumpkin Bowling,” using real bowling pins and hard cooking pumpkins. For a bird’s-eye view of the festivities, ride the Ferris wheel on Main Street.

Stroll the Food Craft Court for an assortment of healthy and fair foods (wraps, stews, turnovers, fried dough, fried pickles, maple cotton candy, and pumpkin-inspired treats), and peruse booths where dozens of artisans will be selling crafts, paintings, handmade specialty food products, and more.

Live entertainment on the bandstand and at other selected locations keeps things lively until evening, when the towers of pumpkins are lighted.

Keene Pumpkin Festival, 603-352-1303, www.pumpkinfestival.org.
Free.

Recommended Reading

Sep 19, 2014
Tina George

Third Winchester events, food festivals anchor weekend

Battlefield events to lead off weekend

By Ryan Cornell

The Third Battle of Winchester, the largest and arguably most important battle fought in the Shenandoah Valley, returns to the town 150 years later in the form of Civil War reenactors, memorial ceremonies and educational tours and lectures this weekend.

Events scheduled to commemorate the sesquicentennial anniversary of the battle — fought on Sept. 19, 1864 — fill three full days of programs from Friday to Sunday at the Winchester battlefield.

According to Shenandoah Battlefields Foundation Communications Coordinator Rob Aitcheson, this is the biggest event ever presented in the foundation’s history.

“We’ve never done a three-day commemorative program,” he said. “It’s always been a one-day type of program. This has the capability to see thousands of folks come out to the battlefield.”

On Friday, historians will lead visitors on a motorcoach tour of the battlefield, a guided tour through the Confederate and National cemeteries and a walking tour through downtown Winchester.

Activities on Saturday, starting at 9 a.m., include a living history camp, artillery and cavalry demonstrations, battlefield walking tours and performances by Civil War era dancers and singers.

A “Walk in their Footsteps” program from 10 a.m. to noon will give visitors an opportunity to walk with reenactors to retrace the paths of Confederate and Union troops during the battle.

The day will conclude with a ceremony at 6 p.m. honoring the soldiers who fought in the battle with a cannon salute, roll call of names, floating lanterns and luminary walk.

The Third Battle of Winchester turned the tide of the Civil War for the Confederacy in this area, Aitcheson said. It marked the beginning of the end for their hold on the valley.

“Another interesting point is that this battle had the largest cavalry charge against fixed positions on U.S. soil in American history,” he said.

Admission is free to Winchester and Frederick County residents and $10 for residents outside the county.

For more information, visit http://tiny.cc/nnzcmx or call 540-740-4545.

This weekend, Edinburg is kickin’ it old school with its 34th annual Ole Time Festival from Friday to Sunday.

Favorites making a return include the antique car show, Civil War living history encampment, wine and cider tastings and square and line dance.

The popular bed race and duck race are scheduled for Sunday.

Admission to the festival is free and is $10 for wine and cider tasting.

For more information, visit http://tiny.cc/0pzcmx.

The United Way of Front Royal-Warren County holds its annual Shrimp, Oyster and Barbecue Festival from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday, featuring an all-you-can-eat buffet catered by The Apple House, beer and wine, a silent auction and a children’s corner.

Proceeds from the event will help raise money for The Phoenix Project, which strives to reestablish services for individuals in Warren County experiencing sexual assault and domestic violence.

Tickets are $50 for adults and $25 for children 10 and younger. The festival will be held at the Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department at 221 N. Commerce Ave. in Front Royal. For tickets or more information, call 540-636-3636.

If seafood isn’t really your thing, the Taste of the Town will feature tastings from a number of area restaurants and eateries, including Soul Mountain, Naughty Girls Donuts and Joe’s Steakhouse.

The event, held between 7 and 10 p.m. Friday on Main Street in Downtown Front Royal, will also offer a car show, live music and children’s activities.

Proceeds from the event will support the Warren County-Front Royal C-CAP, which provides food, clothing, medical supplies and financial assistance to local families in need.

Admission for tastings is $10. For more information, visit http://tiny.cc/mtzcmx or call 540-635-7064.

Merging classic bluegrass and gospel with blues and swing, The Dustbowl Revival fills up Downtown Winchester’s Bright Box Theater with its “Old Crow Medicine Show-meets-Louis Armstrong” music.

According to a news release, their instrumentation has been known to include the fiddle, mandolin, trombone, clarinet, trumpet, ukelele, tuba, organ, harmonica, washboard, kazoo and a bass guitar made from a canoe oar.

Admission to the concert, held at 7 p.m. Sunday, is $10 in advance and $15 the day of the event.

A couple of days before the band takes the stage, Street Corner Symphony, an a cappella group that appeared on NBC’s “The Sing-Off,” will perform at the Bright Box Theater at 7 p.m. Friday.

Other events include:

Apple Harvest Arts and Crafts Festival
Winchester welcomes the arrival of apple season with samples of locally grown apples, an apple pie eating contest and inflatables for children to play on. The festival, held at Jim Barnett Park on Saturday and Sunday, will also feature vendors selling arts and crafts, such as pencil drawings, hand-spun alpaca wool, handmade jewelry and hand-blown glass.

Main Street Agriculture
Equal parts farmer’s market and educational fair, this event held 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday on Winchester’s walking mall features fresh produce from local farmers, samples from neighboring restaurants and cooking demonstrations.

New Market Pup Pool Party
Wind down the “dog days” of summer with a swim for your pooch at the New Market Community Pool from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday. Registration and proof of vaccination are required by Friday.

Avtex Community Day
A celebration commemorating the transformation of the former Avtex complex into an eco-friendly redevelopment site is slated for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The event, which will begin with a special ceremony, will also include local exhibits, site tours, music, food and children’s activities. Avtex Community Day will be held at 400 D Kendrick Lane in Front Royal.

Historical Society quilt lectures
The Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society presents a series of lectures on Friday and Saturday, titled “A Focus on Quilts from the Lower Shenandoah Valley.” The lectures will be held at Shenandoah University’s Harry F. Byrd School of Business in the Stimpson Auditorium. Admission is $65 for members and $75 for non-members.

Changing of the Leaves show
Orkney Springs Fire and Rescue hosts its auto, truck and tractor show from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday with a variety of vintage cars and big rigs. The show will be held at 3821 Orkney Grade, at its intersection with Kelly Road, in Basye.

Recommended Reading

Pages:1234567...181»
About - Contact - Privacy - Terms of Service