What's up at a virtual tea festival?
This, like tea festivals in Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Pennsylvania, Australia, Great Britain, China and India is a festival focused on experiencing a wide range of tea. We want to give you the tools and the passion to hold your own afternoon tea or tasting events or just cultivate a lifelong love of tea and different cultures and that means exposing you to as many different teas and tea traditions as we possibly can! To further that mission, we are gathering together some tea industry experts from around the world to speak on several topics and teach classes as well as vendors from all over to offer you the chance to obtain teas, treats and teaware to enable you to continue your tea experience at home.
However, as we have all seen over the past several months, COVID-19 is wreaking havoc on the events industry. Our prime concern is keeping our guests, speakers and vendors safe. As a tea festival is something that usually focuses a lot on tasting teas, we aren't sure how this can be done safely not knowing what requirements will be for masks and social distancing once November rolls around. Our vendors, who provide the wealth of shopping and tasting variety for our guests, have also been hit hard by the economic shut down. With things being so uncertain and small businesses really hurting right now, we have decided to try something new.
A virtual festival can be less of a burden to participate and travel to for everyone involved. And... what we think is a really exciting aspect of a virtual event... more international participation is possible due to the virtual nature of things!
This event will take place over 2 days. Some content will be recorded for you to access at your leisure, some will be live. We will have a virtual vendor room as well where you can chat with vendors live and browse show specials as well as more extensive listings of their wares. Some vendors will offer virtual tastings of their teas, showing how to prepare, how to use certain equipment, talking about where their teas come from.... all those things you want to ask them when you are at an in-person event with them, you can still ask. Depending on the ticket option you choose, you may also be able to taste samples of their teas along with their presentations!
We are still working out the final details of how guests will participate. Options will range from free access to a VIP access pass that will come with a tasting cup, tea samples and more that will be shipped to you in time for the event. Classes that have a suggested equipment list in order to participate fully will be noted well in advance of the event so, if you choose to do so, you can obtain items in time for the event.
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