The first annual Kids Food Festival was hosted at Citi Pond at Bryant Park on Saturday, January 21, 2012. The entire event included cooking demos with celebrity chefs, scavenger hunts, live music, and plenty of healthy food sampling. This was FREE event for all parents and children to attend but for selected culinary demos tickets had to be purchased.
A percentage of the proceeds went to Share Our Strength, a national non-profit organization which focuses on ending childhood hunger in America by connecting children with the nutritious food they need to lead healthy, active lives. The James Beard Foundation also shared a role in raising money for childhood hunger.
On this particular day while most the events were held in different buildings and vendors were set up in small greenhouses, it just happened to be snowing outside and rather cold. Through it all, families put on their winter gear and made their way out to Citi Pond.
I visited several vendors which included Honest Tea, James Beard Foundation, and Wild Planet to name a few, all of which I was able sample and be educated on their outlook on healthy and sustainable foods. While trying to stay warm between greenhouses, I was greeted by another vendor with an udder-like backpack filled organic hot chocolate on her back which I thought was amusing. As she poured the organic hot chocolate into my cup, she explained the process of how Organic Valley produces their products.
I later had the opportunity to interview a several vendors and few chefs following their demos, check out below!
Before heading out, I chatted with Chef JJ, who is best known from BRAVO’s Rocco Dinner Party as the first winner. Since then he has a new show, “Kids Love Cooking with Chef JJ” and wanted to share with me what its all about.
What do you hope to achieve with your new show?
To teach the kids about conscious cooking because no one know really knows what healthy cooking means.
What can we expect to see from you in the near future?
My juice, OMJ (Oatmeal Juice), a healthy lifestyle drink that is due to hit shelves in the Fall of 2012. You may also catch me back on the restaurant scene as well.
Overall a great day it was and I hope all vendors and chefs were able to build awareness of children’s obesity, alternative food options, and a better way for a healthier life.
Thanks For Reading!
- Isaiah [@Urban_Foodie14]