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Kai for Community Waiheke Food Festival & Waiheke Homemade Chilli Sauce Fest

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Museum of Waiheke
165 Onetangi Road, Onetangi
Waiheke + Google Map
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About this Event

A fun-for-all-ages celebration of food grown and produced on Waiheke, past, present and future.

Experience a family-friendly celebration of Waiheke’s food heritage. Enjoy workshops, produce competitions, tastings, and demonstrations that explore the island’s food culture, history, and share the knowledge and growing skills of Waihekeians. Join us for a vibrant event that brings together the community to celebrate the flavours that define Waiheke’s unique food identity.

Celebrations which will take place from 10 – 2pm on the Museum of Waiheke grounds. The much loved chilli sauce fest will be taking place from 1 – 3pm across the road, and some of the neighbouring vineyards have joined the party by offering specials on the day.

The programme includes food stories shared by Waiheke food growers and producers:

  • a kōrero by Eugene Behan-Kitto on the legacy of growing kūmara on the island
  • a presentation by Jackie O’Brien on the Gradiska family who were the first commercial wine producers on Waiheke.
  • Hadas Ore will also talk about the activation of the Waiheke Food Charter at some of Waihekes schools
  • Bianca Ranson will share the story of the māra kai at Piritahi Marae
  • Wendy Kendall will talk about how her Waiheke herb spread came to be, and using edible weeds.

Workshops include a session by Eddie Welsh of ‘Starter Plants’ on seed sowing and saving, and how to bottle fruit using the overflow method by Laura Sunderland. Puawai Ormsby will be leading a wananga about the hue, the first cultivated plant on Waiheke. Participants will have the chance to hear the pūrakau of Rona and the moon and decorate their own hue. Kat Howard will be teaching people how to weave a rourou harvest basket using harakeke and there will be a tour of Waiheke Resources Trust’s Compost Co. site and Te Motu’s restaurant garden.

There will be a myriad of food stalls, local food trucks, and the fresh produce displays and competitions. There are four categories – home grown vegetables, home grown fruit, homemade jams and chutneys and an autumn floral arrangement. Prizes have generously been supplied by Fenice, the Waiheke Garden Club and Gulf Trees. Those entering the competitions should bring their produce to the museum between 9 – 10am.

For the tāmariki there is the scarecrow competition with a great gardening prize donated by Sunshine Valley Nursery. This is open to all Waiheke children or child based groups. Scarecrows need to arrive before 10am on the day and voting is made by public choice. There will also be games such as ‘corn hole’ and free flower/fruit/vege face painting.

The Festival also marks the launch of Tanya Batt’s Waiheke food history project, with an opportunity for anyone to share a food story from Waiheke in the ‘Talk Tent’ with Valia Papoutsaki. There will also be a self-guided Waiheke Food Quiz that draws on the exhibits at the Museum. All those who complete the quiz go into the draw to win a great food prize.

All events and activities are free thanks to support from the Waiheke Local Board, the Once Upon An Island Trust and Kai Waiheke. Food and beverages are available for sale and donations for entry into the Museum are appreciated. Limited edition ‘Kai for Community’ T-Shirts and tea towels will be available for sale featuring the awesome festival artwork of Vibeke Brethouwer.

Note: Limited parking is available at the Museum, overflow parking at the Waiheke cemetery. Please do not park in the cycle lanes. Cycling, ride sharing and bussing are encouraged at this reusables-only zero waste event.

Cost: Koha

Registration/Ticket Info:

Attendance registration not needed but if you're participating in any of the competitions please check the Facebook page for how to register (for free).


Once Upon an Island Charitable Trust
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