Over the weekend Ottawa played host to its second annual Tea Festival. With the main event being held at the Ottawa Convention Centre (in a hall right next to doors to the Rideau Centre) the venue was witness to a very consistent flow of people throughout the day which kept the place full. Then on Sunday the festivities continued with a series of workshops that were held at a variety of locations around the downtown area.
Of course the best part of any tea festival is all the great varieties of tea available! It was hard not to be drinking – if you didn’t have your cup filled by one of the courteous volunteers canvasing the floor with hot pots ready to pour, then you were certain to get a cup at one of the many exhibits. Every table had some teas to taste, and if they didn’t then you were likely to find a delicious snack, the perfect compliment.
As one wandered the hall it wasn’t hard to spot many local companies. DAVIDsTEA is one who certainly stood out. They were not the only ones getting attention though, some other notable locals on location were Shanti Tea, the Algonquin Tea Company , Koko Chocolates and naturally Kimicha Tea.
Another great aspect of the festival not to be over-looked was the strong multi-cultural influences present. Not just at the tables or in the wide varieties of teas either. At the far end of the hall people could take a seat or stop to pause and enjoy some great live performances which included some amazing dance group performances, some enjoyable musicians and some well informed guest speakers. The pictured dance troop is Ottawa’s Darpan dance group of Lovina Srivastava who specializes in all styles of Indian dancing.
It is also important to add that there was an ongoing fundraiser directly associated with the event to support AfEC an organization which helps provide basic amenities to children and adults in India.
Overall the event was a smash hit and bywardofmouth.ca would like to give a big shout out and thank you to Kimi from Kimicha Tea for putting on this great event and for having us in attendance. We certainly cannot wait until the next year when we do not doubt that there will be a third annual Ottawa Tea Festival which will continue to grow bigger and better with each passing year.
More photos after the jump.
writing and photography by C.Cullen.
edited by J.Beamish.