The Up!Skilling Food Festival has been building community skills in local and sustainable food from soil preparation through to your plate for the last three years. This year, the Up!Skilling Food Festival has expanded into a four-day event thanks to the collaborative partnership of the Island Food Network and Cape Breton University. Up!Skilling 2017 offers more seats, more workshops, and more space for engaging discussions and includes a film night, academic conference, food tours, and Up!Skilling’s signature workshop event.
“The Up!Skilling Food Festival is about creating spaces to bring people together to talk and learn about all things food related.” says Alicia Lake, one of the organizers, “We are thrilled this year to offer the community four days filled with discussions, films, tours, how-to’s, and of course, fun.”
The film night and opening reception will take place on Thursday, May 11 at 173 Charlotte Street, Sydney (the old Bank of Montreal building). This event includes a screening of “Just Eat It: A Food Waste Story”. A film for kids will be shown simultaneously, so bring the whole family! Opening reception starts at 6p.m and film starts at 7p.m. followed by discussion.
The Up!Skilling academic conference takes place Friday, May 12 at the Holiday Inn in Sydney from 8a.m. to 4:15p.m. This event includes a full-day of round-tables, papers, and conversation about food. Panel themes include: tourism and culture, health, agriculture, and data along with food and civic engagement. Join presenters and attendees for an evening ceilidh at 5p.m. in downtown Sydney.
Saturday, May 13 is a fun-filled day of food tours from 9:20am to 5pm, including a tour of the Cape Breton Farmer’s Market and a food security game at Breton Brewing followed by visits to two local farms. Please note children are not permitted in the brewery but there will be children’s activities available at the Market to enjoy with the whole family.
Finally, the Up!Skilling workshops take place Sunday, May 14 from 9am until 5pm at Cape Breton University. This is the signature event of Up!Skilling. All day long we will build our food skills in 6 streams including: cooking, growing, preserving, discussion, advanced Skills, and culture. A light lunch will be provided.
The Up!Skilling Food Festival & Conference will run from May 11-14. You can register for event days separately by searching Up!Skilling at eventbrite.ca. Conference details and future events can be found at islandfoodnetwork.ca.