Over the years, the City of Richmond has proven that it knows how to throw a massive end of summer party. The fifth annual Richmond World Festival (August 30 & 31, 2019) returns to Minoru Park with a jam-packed roster of music, cultural and artistic displays, family-friendly activities, and of course, a smorgasbord of food and drink offerings. Last year’s event attracted over 55,000 people, with this year promising to be just as spectacular.
Richmond celebrates its multicultural make-up during this two-day festival that will dazzle attendees with performances by over 100 acts on 8 different stages. Community-based cultural and dance groups, as well as a roster of music artists, like Sister Says and Phé, will entertain attendees with their talents. Each day culminates in a headlining performance on the main stage: Friday night features the infectious tunes of reggae-pop group Bedouin Soundclash, and Saturday is bound to be a musical blast with The Strumbellas, a chart-topping Toronto rock band.
Roam the site taking in performances at Kids World, unforgettable experiences at the Global Village, and the many cultural pavilions, vendors, and free workshops (such as Arabic calligraphy).
Undoubtedly, one of the biggest draws to the festival is the FEASTival of Flavours—a huge array of local food trucks. This year will see an increase to 60 participants, the most the festival has ever hosted, as well as an expansion into the new north plaza in front of the Minoru Centre for Active Living. Compostable, environmentally friendly wooden cutlery will be mandatory; Green Ambassadors will help divert waste (80% last year), and water stations will help the festival meet its sustainability commitment.Get your multicultural palate prepared, since the trucks in attendance will be serving up the best that the globe has to offer. Choices include cassava tacos from Brazilian Roots, Mauritian cactus potatoes and Rotis filled with chicken curry from Cruisin’ Tabazi, and Middle Eastern grilled halloumi and fattoush from SAJetarian.
New this year is Aloha Poke, offering customizable poke bowls, as well as Taco’N Todo’s recently launched food truck, which serves up tacos, quesadillas, tostadas, and burritos.
Those looking for more classic American fair food can gorge on pulled pork poutine from Truckin’ BBQ, burgers from Triple O’s on the Go, and buffalo wings from WINGS. Oh, and don’t worry. The crowd-pleasing Original Hurricane Potato and Rotato will be in attendance for those wanting a deep-fried potato-on-a-stick fix.
Sweet eats also provide a tour of the world, with cinnamon and sugar-dusted cylindrical pastries from Slavic Rolls, Hawaiian-style shaved ice from Snow Cloud Shavery, and Italian desserts from Cannoli King.
And when the summer heat and the festival energy dial-up, head for bubble tea from Teapressu and Juicy Green Express or fruit smoothies from Jamaican Mi Juicy to quench your thirst. Free Slurpees from 7-Eleven will also be given out, so keep your eyes peeled for this cooldown treat.
The food-themed programming continues at the festival’s Culinary Stage, which welcomes high profile local chefs to demo a signature dish. Last year, Lan Do from Richmond’s Bánh Mì Très Bon and Mike Manlulu from Steveston’s Britannia Brewing were among the many top chefs who participated. This year’s line-up will continue to focus on regional ingredients and a melding of cultural traditions in an interactive audience environment.
There’s so much to eat and do at the Richmond World Festival, that you very well might find yourself attending both days of the event!
Photos: City of Richmond