Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Wild Times at Wildfoods Festival


Wild Times at Wildfoods Festival

For over 20 years, the Hokitika township has played host to a celebration of wild foods, wild drinks and wild times – and this year was no exception.

Now in its 23rd year, the annual Wildfoods Festival was held on Saturday, 10 March, attracting a crowd of almost 12,000 local, national and international visitors.

With over 50 stalls covering a broad array of foods, event organiser Mike Keenan says the festival was a real hit with all those who attended. “This year, it was exciting to offer our largest range of foods ever,” says Mike Keenan. “People really enjoyed the diverse smorgasbord of foods on offer, tasting things they hadn’t tried – or even thought about trying – before. With beetles and grubs for appetisers, gamey meats and fresh seafood for a surf ‘n’ turf lunch, and plenty of sweet desserts – with optional bugs – it was easy to create a flavoursome menu.”

As well as the lure of wild foods – and drinks – the festival offered entertainment throughout the day, with an assortment of musical styles and characters, and a series of well-attended culinary demonstrations by renowned celebrity chef Charles Royal. The festival was officially opened by Hon Gerry Brownlee.

A highlight for many attendees was the festival’s first ever wedding, a formal, elegant affair with 100 guests and over a thousand onlookers, held on the main stage.

“We were delighted to be approached by the couple who asked if we would be able to host their wedding at the festival,” says Mr Keenan. “It was certainly a first for us, but quite fitting for Eli and Liz who met at the festival, and have been regular attendees for many years. What a wild way to start married life – we wish them all the best.”

Organisers were extremely happy with the quality of the stalls, with judges extremely impressed with the style, service and enthusiasm on display. A range of awards are made every year to stall holders with Curly Tree Whitebait judged ‘best new food’, Udderly Wild Desserts the ‘best community stall’, Deep Creek Delicatessen Corner the ‘best commercial stall, and the award for ‘best overall stall’ going to Wild Boar Long Dogs.

The day was also notable for the amount of effort attendees put in to dressing for the festival. Colourful and courageous costumes were the order of the day, with a selection to rival Sevens tournaments. Winner of ‘best festival’ costume was an attendee from Darfield whose combination gorilla suit with caged captive struck the judges as the most original.

The festival attracts thousands of visitors of visitors each year from throughout the country and overseas, as well as generating significant national and international media interest, and has been listed as one of 300 Unmissable Festival and Events Around the World by international travel writes, Frommers. Reporters from as far away as England and Argentina covered this year’s event.

Mr Keenan says he was pleased with the behaviour of the crowd, which swells the population of Hokitika over the weekend. “Part of the unique nature of the Wildfoods Festival is the friendly atmosphere. It caters to a range of ages – and palates – which is something we have always encouraged.”

The festival also makes a significant contribution to the local area, with volunteer groups, clubs and local charities the main benefactors. Organisers estimate the festival provides around $3 million in direct contribution to the community each year.

While the region is known for its high rainfall, the weather was dry and warm all day. “The temperature was just perfect for an outdoor event, adding to the atmosphere and boosting attendance numbers,” says Mr Keenan. “We had strong pre-sales leading up to the festival, particularly in the final weeks, with a large walk up crowd buying gate-sale tickets.”

-ends-


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news