About The Festival
A Brief History of the Event
The Wagga Wagga Food and Wine Festival was launched on November 9th, 2002. The first festival immediately followed on from the Farmers Market which had been held in the morning. From these humble beginnings the festival has become a stand alone annual event which attracts more than 5000 people.
The festival gives local wineries and food and dining outlets an opportunity to showcase their goods. As a stall holder, where else could you go and show off your products and abilities to over 5000 people in one day. As a patron, where else could you go and sample over 40 types of food and drink, be entertained continuously as well as have distractions for your children whilst you enjoy the atmosphere.
The festival has always been a fund raising event for Wollundry Rotary. In the past three years we have chosen a single beneficiary to donate all of the festivals earnings to. In previous years the funds were distributed throughout the community via the clubs normal distribution processes.
In 2009 $25,000 was donated to the Riverina Cancer Care Centre. In 2010, $30,000 was handed to the Renal Dialysis Unit at the Wagga Base Hospital. In 2011 we were very proud to donate the entire proceeds from the festival to Willan’s Hill School. This was an amount of $40,652.00 which was for the purchase of equipment for the students to assist them in communicating with other people.
In 2012 we will once again donate all of the proceeds to MICAH HOUSE. We have also secured major sponsors this year and this will add considerably to the final outcome of the festival.
Goals for the Future
In 2010 the size of the festival "grounds" was doubled to cater for an even larger crowd. In 2011 the hours of the festival were extended to run from midday to 10.00pm.
The organizers are always looking for new ways to improve the event. Use of the Civic Theatre has become essential and this year we will be holding children’s entertainment in the theatre, This will give parents some much needed freedom to allow them to savor what’s on offer in the festival proper.
Wagga Wagga City Council is a partner in the event providing expert assistance to the organisers. The goal is to build the event over the next three to five into a multi-day event that will attracts a crowd of more than 30,000 people.
Festival Date is set for the 31st of March 2012.