NORTH ADAMS -- Jessica Hammond, of Freeland, Md., and her family were looking for a few things to do while vacationing in the Berkshires for the week when they found a listing for Sunday's 11th annual Berkshire Food Festival on the Berkshire Visitors Bureau website.
"This is excellent," she said, as she and her extended family perused the fare being offered up by local restaurants. "My sister just gave me ‘mad props' for this choice. The whole family is having a great time. We're ‘foodies,' so this is just great fun, but we also love the music and all of the shops."
Hammond and her family weren't the only tourists enjoying the festival. Bernadette Waters, of Long Island, N.Y., and Mary Jane Graswald, of Connecticut, said they make a point of visiting the food festival while visiting Stamford, Vt.
"We come here every year," Waters said. "We eat our way through the tents."
Graswald added, "We love Boston Seafood and the Spice Root. We start with them first and then make our way through the other vendors. It's a perfect day for it."
Wild Oats Market chef Greg Roach, who was serving barbecue beef brisket, turkey curry and gazpacho, also noted an increase in visitors this year.
"It's been really fun and there's a nice crowd," he said. "I've had a lot of out-of-towners today, which is really nice to see."
Veronica Bosley, the city's director of tourism and events, said she was pleased with the
"There's two major events going on 10 minutes apart, but that's the Berkshires on any weekend in the summer," she said. "We've had a great response. We had people here at 11:30 a.m., which made us feel good before we even opened at noon."
She added, "The crowd has been very steady. Ticket sales have also been really good. We're seeing people buy tickets in batches of 10 this year, as opposed to batches of five tickets. That's good for the restaurants. We also have a really good mix of entertainment: two bands, a street magician and face painting."
Tickets were sold for $1 each, with vendors pricing their food dishes between one to five tickets.
Cindy Rosenburg, owner of Crazy Cakes, a decorated cake and dessert company out of Florida, was selling "Angry Bird" themed cupcakes, whoopee pies and cookies in addition to samples of her cakes.
"This is my second year. It's great advertising," she said. "It's also fun to see people I don't get to see on a regular basis."
Greg Mori, owner of Forestopia, an organic and wild-harvested fair trade food company from Shel burne Falls, was offering drinks such as hibiscus garden lemonade and chaga cha cha and cookies made from maya nuts, nutrient-rich nuts harvested in Central American rain forests.
"This is my second time here," he said. "We've had a decent crowd. I'm not that far away, so when I was starting this venture last year and heard about the food festival, it made sense to come. It's a good time."
Participating restaurants included Boston Seafood, Christo's Famous Pizza, Gramercy Bistro, The Hub, Lickety Split, Public Eat + Drink and the Sushi House from North Ad ams; Crazy Cakes from Florida; Gala Restaurant, Spice Root and Wild Oats Market from Williamstown; SoCo Creamery of Great Barrington and Forestopia from Shelburne Falls.
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