Rhubarb lovers rejoice! Wakefield’s celebration of its most famous vegetable returns to paint the city pink from 25-27 February. With tons of free family activities for all, the Rhubarb Festival promises to start 2022 off with a bang!
Wakefield is part of the famed nine square mile area of West Yorkshire that has become known as The Rhubarb Triangle – the three corners of the triangle roughly equate to Leeds, Bradford and, of course, Wakefield. In this region, rhubarb is grown in special sheds in a process known as “Forcing”.
Each year in February, to coincide with the growing season, Wakefield city centre comes to life with a festival dedicated to its most famous vegetable.
Read on to find out our top 7 activities for children at the Rhubarb Festival 2022!
Instil a love of food in your little ones early with free celebrity chef demos running every day from 11am – 3pm. Come and meet BBC1’s Saturday Kitchen regular and food writer Sabrina Ghayour and Great British Bake Off 2021 vegan baker Freya Cox for the very first time. Other chefs include former GBBO contestant Karen Wright and MasterChef: The Professionals’ finalists Jono Hawthorne and Matt Healy. Local restaurants Iris and Qubana, and local star bakers, Castleford’s Bake My Daye, will also showcase their best rhubarb-inspired recipes.
Join Grow Wakefield at the Rhubarb Festival as they answer any questions you may have about growing your own food, demonstrate propagation and get hands on with potting on techniques. Learn more about growing from seed and collect a beginner’s seed sowing kit with a choice of free seeds, compost and information sheets to ensure you leave armed with everything you need to grow your own food for the very first time! The sessions will run every day from 11am to 3pm in the Bull Ring.
Tantalise your taste buds with a selection of fantastic food and drink from over 60 traders, with local and regional delights to suit every palate (and lots of them with a rhubarb twist!). Children will enjoy the vibrant colours and tasty treats while parents can stock up on local and regional produce.
Families are invited to join this special workshop at Wakefield Museum at 10.30am on Wednesday 23 February to celebrate the history of rhubarb growing in our region! Each family will mix together the ingredients for a tasty rhubarb crumble that they can take home to bake. Families will also imagine that they are going to start their own rhubarb crumble businesses and create ‘company brands’, designing eye-catching logos and colourful paper packaging!
On the Saturday and Sunday, there will be free face painting (10am – 4pm) and kids colouring (10am – 5pm) at the Ridings Shopping Centre as well as live music (10am – 4pm) and cooking demonstration by Wakefield’s own GBBO star Karen Wright at selected times throughout the weekend. Finally a vegan fayre will also take place on Sunday 27th February, in the upper mall’s Kitchen Garden from 10am – 4pm
On Friday 25 February, head over to Wakefield Cathedral for a host of rhubarb-themed family activities between 10am – 3pm. Expect arts & crafts and free workshops, including wax resist pictures, making a peculiar plant and a rhubarb shed torch picture.
For Wakefield’s Rhubarb Festival 2022, The Art House will be opening its doors and inviting you to join us for a range of free family-friendly activities that will connect you with nature. Come along and help tend to our Urban Orchard. We’ll be weeding, pruning, talking about our planting scheme, and even designing labels to help identify everything come harvest time. Plus, pick up one of our nature loom kits, complete with twigs, string, and instructions on how to create your very own nature loom. Start it on the day and then take it home to finish your weaving!