Music, Food, Beverage & Culture | Banks Peninsula Festival

Written by on 19 January 2021

Nestled on the sun-drenched side of Lyttelton Harbour, Orton Bradley Park plays home to the Banks Peninsula Festival on Saturday 20th February. A vibrant showcase of music, food, beverage and culture from around the region and beyond. Take a walk on the wild side at the Banks Peninsula Festival!

We caught up with Festival Director, Emma Schimanski to chat about what attendees can expect from the event. As well as holding the position as Head Honcho for the festie, Emma hosts RDU 98.5FM’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Britannia, you can catch her on the airwaves every Thursday from 10am – 12pm.

Emma Schimanski – Festival Director

To get us started, can you tell us a little more about the venue that will play host to the festival? 

Orton Bradley Park was actually farmed originally by a local family from the 1800s called The Gardiners. The current generation of the family still resides in the original Purau Homestead! The private park consists of exquisite heritage trees, natural streams, and a ‘Green Cathedral’ created from the tall trees sheltering part of the park – which is where our Mark Banfield stage will be.

What can attendees expect from the festival?

Chill family vibes, great music, stunning food and drinks, beautiful vistas – and they’ll definitely to want to come back next year!

Who is the team behind the festival?

I have struck GOLD!!! The overall team working on the festival consists of 212 Music Group (planning, security, production and logistics), G&A – The Giveback Agency (marketing and creative), Nikau Rhythm (music booker and artist liaison), Karen Cloom, Donna Lee and Marc Royal. They all have amazing talent and extensive knowledge in the industry. 

Banks Peninsula Mystery Box Cook-Off seems like a pretty special addition to the festival! Can you explain the competition and how it works?

The Banks Peninsula Mystery Box Cook-Off is unique to the Banks Peninsula Festival. It consists of three stunning and mighty brave culinarily-blessed individuals challenged to create a plate from a mystery box of ingredients that has been foraged from the Banks Peninsula region. Everyone can sit and watch these amazing chefs create a dish from scratch under time pressure! Judges this year are Isabelle Weston from The Britten Stables and Louis Dyer from Civil & Naval with two more judges to be announced! Our competing chefs this year are Giulio Sturla from MAPU, Jamie Jamison from Everybody Eats and Bob Fair from Alfred.

Now to the music! What were you looking for in an artist when choosing the line up for the festival?

I was looking for diversity; that is where I want to take the festival long term! I don’t want the festival to be known for a certain genre/style of the act. I want to keep people interested, surprise and delight them with flavours of music they wouldn’t otherwise be exposed to! The prerequisite was world-class music and live performances. There is definitely something for everyone on both our stages in 2021 and we’ll be developing that concept for the years to come!

Who are you most excited to see on the line-up and why?

Delaney Davidson and Pieces of Molly – there aren’t any other acts in New Zealand like both of these guys. 

What about the festival layout? How many stages will there be?

Two! We will have a Main Stage in the open field area, and Mark Banfield stage under the gorgeous tree canopy we call ‘The Green Cathedral’. The Main Stage is for everyone to sit in front of and enjoy the tunes, and the Mark Banfield stage will be a wonderful celebration of the prominent butcher, Mark Banfield’s life, who many of us on the Peninsula dearly miss. We are honoured to be remembering him at the Banks Peninsula Festival for 2021 and all of the years to come.

And of course the food! What will be on offer for food and beverage at the event?

Over 30 food and drink stalls will be onsite at the festival including Akaroa Salmon, Cakes by Anna, Cassels Brewing Co, Peninsula Gin and Twenty Seven Steps. A full list of vendors will be announced on our website soon!

Finally, what makes the Banks Peninsula Festival such a special event?

The relaxed family atmosphere, the culture of the local people involved in the festival, the location being in a historical and beautiful natural park, our diverse range of local musical talent, the very special inaugural Mark Banfield stage honouring his life, and all the beautiful food and drinks provided by local suppliers! 

Enjoy world-class musical talent on the Banks Peninsula Festival feature and local stages, international quality cooking demonstrations in the sprawling teepee and great food and beverage! Fet your tickets today to escape the grind and enjoy a day of excitement and intrigue in your very own backyard.

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