By Julie Ray
There is the old saying: ‘If you want a job done, give it to a busy person’. Rose Taylor from Cudgera Creek has a 7-month-old child, runs a small farm with her husband, helps run major music events, and has no qualms taking on someone else’s baby. That baby is a well-fed 7-year-old that celebrated its last birthday with more than 16,000 people on the first weekend of September. That baby is Sample Food Festival, the premier food event for northern New South Wales.
Remy Tancred gave birth to Sample in 2011 with 120 exhibitors, and 10,000 visitors. Going into its eighth year, Rose Taylor will be the safe set of hands that will be nurturing Remy’s creation. Rose has taken over the festival and this year Sample will have 100 market stalls plus an expanded arts, designers and ceramists area, kids activations, 30 restaurants, coffee vendors and bars and an expected 17,000 visitors will come through the gates.
‘It happened very quickly. I worked with Remy at other events and she mentioned she wanted to sell it and I jumped at the chance,’ said Rose. ‘It’s one of my favourite days of the year. There is so much to love about it; it showcases everything that is wonderful about this region.’
Rose grew up in the northern rivers and moved away as a teenager to live in Sydney and overseas, where she worked on events in the music industry. She has been back in the region for the past eight years and has worked with Bluesfest, Splendour in the Grass and Falls festivals.
Although she has no food background Rose feels her experience in the music industry put her in good stead for running an event that showcases the northern rivers food bowl.
‘It is such an established brand there is so much the local producers, restaurants, chefs and creatives bring to it. I want to create the platform for that; I want to make sure that’s there no limit to the quality here,’ said Rose.
Although, Rose has a thousand ideas to bring to the festival she is taking small steps and has Remy guiding her through her first year.
‘I’m trying not to change too much about the festival because I really love it as it is. There is a part of me that wants to push the other creatives, the local potters for example; it’s so rich this region,’ said Rose. ‘Whether it’s creative with food or creative with clay it all goes hand in hand; we really do have a huge diversity.’
Sample Food Festival, Saturday 1 September 2018 at Bangalow Showground 8am–4pm
Tickets for the Sample lunch held on Friday 31 August at Bangalow Showground with Shannon Bennett and his Vue de Monde team go on sale Wednesday 20 June for $150 per person. samplefoodevents.com