The countdown is on to the 13th annual Harvest Festival in Waterford City. The festival will take place from September 9th to 11th at venues indoor and outdoor across the city centre.
The festival will open on Friday afternoon at 2pm with the Festival Market following which the Waterford Honey Show will be officially opened at 3pm by Senator Grace O’Sullivan and the the successful winners and presentation of the Waterford Honey Show prizes will take place at 12 noon on Saturday at John Robert’s Square.
The festival is being supported by Waterford City and County Council and organised by GIY who are bringing sustainability right to the heart of the festivities, showcasing Waterford’s rich food heritage and celebrating the City’s diverse restaurants, eateries and producers. The best of Waterford’s food and drink will be centre stage and there is a series of serious food talks for sides.
Following the official opening the 100-mile food market is set to open and will traverse across Waterford’s wonderful squares and interconnecting streets, it will span from John Robert’s Square into Arundel Square onto Michael Street, and travel up Patrick’s Street and down to Barronstrand Street. The market is focused on featuring the best food producers and vendors within a 100-mile radius of Waterford a means of supporting hyper-local and regional food producers and resulting in a more sustainable food market. The organisers have confirmed that over half of the market vendors are from within the county of Waterford and there are unique traders with plenty of fresh offerings and familiar faces at the festival’s food stalls.
On the ‘Food Done Right’ talks stage, there will be four talks on Saturday and on Sunday from 11 am to 4 pm. Talk titles include, ‘Global Shocks/Local Impact’, Plan(e)t Based Diets’, Mass Movements Verus Mass Extinctions’, ‘Growing with kids’, Zero Waste Kitchens and more featuring some brilliant experts across a variety of sectors from environmental journalist John Gibbons, Head Kitchen Gardener Airfield Estate Kitty Scully, Go Vegan World Ruaidhri O’Boyle, Irish Independent journalist Margaret Donnelly farmer and journalist Hannah- Quinn-Mulligan, Padraig Fogarty of Openfield Ecological Services, economist Jim Power, Chefs Maurice McGeehan, Brian McDermot, Conor Spacey, Janice Casey Bracken, and JB Dubois and more.
On the Taste Waterford Kitchen Stage sponsored by Waterford’s Local Enterprise Office, there will be a host of Waterford’s very own food producers and chefs who will all be sharing their best recipes and food tips. Visitors will enjoy meeting chefs and food producers from all across the county. Demos will be on offer from noon on Saturday to 4 pm on Sunday featuring Momo Chef Michael Buchta & Kamila Bystrzonowska, Faithlegg House Hotel Chef Jenny Flynn, Caitlín Uí Aodha from IASC seafood bar, Nicola Crowley & Dvir Nusery from Mezze and Chef JB Dubois from GrowHQ along with the crew from Legacy Cider.
On the music stage, there are a total of 16 acts that will be setting the groove for the food festival weekend. Highlights include the Backroad Smokers Club, The Knotted Chords, The Cotton Pluckers, Amber & The Bear, Calypso Trio, The Moonshine Boys, Damn Dirty Apes, The Dearg Dooms, Bana Rua, Liam Merriman, David O’Sullivan Band and more.
In the vast Junior GIYer’s area which will take over Broad Street families will enjoy the opportunity to learn how to grow food through the seasons with Muireann Ní Chíobháin co-author of the GIY Know it Allmanac. There will be seed sowing, bug bingo, a Waste Warrior Workshop from Food Cloud, and the Nore Valley Mobile Farm will also be in the vicinity.
During the very first Waterford Honey Show visitors will be able to enjoy meeting the makers and a chance to learn about bee-keeping and about honey making.
Special events will also be on offer including a restaurants trail and a ‘Slice of Culture’ will be on offer at Wyse Park which is a collaboration with Waterford Migrant Forum offering a multicultural experience full of dance, songs and tasty dishes that celebrate Waterford’s ever-diversifying community.
The founder of GIY Michael Kelly says that Waterford is the place to be during the Harvest Festival weekend, stating, “there is an incredible programme of events planned for the City’s Harvest festival from serious food talks, to fun for kids, to great street food to cookery demonstrations and so much more. Best of all almost everything is on offer free of charge, it is going to be such a positive, fun-filled weekend in the epicentre of Ireland’s best place to live, you would be just mad to miss it.”
Source: Waterford City & County Council