It’s one of the biggest challenges of parenthood: Getting your kids to eat things that are actually good for them, instead of piles of cheese puffs or candy. So head to Chicago’s Good Food Festival, a celebration of all things green, nutritious and naturally grown.
If you go
Good Food Festival
9 a.m.-5 p.m. March 21
UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Road, Chicago
The festival includes chef demonstrations from names like Rick Bayless, workshops on everything from cheese-making to beekeeping, and exhibit booths from more than 150 farms, local food artisans, restaurants and non-profits.
And there’s even a special spot for parents and kids to explore eating healthy and sustainable food that won’t make them scrunch up their noses in disgust.
The Kids’ Corner, hosted by non-profit Purple Asparagus, offers samples of kid-friendly food, a reading nook, crafts like herb seed bookmarks, and other activities, from a scavenger hunt to seed planting.
The highlight of the Kids’ Corner is the performances by Miss Jamie from the Farm, a local kindie singer who frequently performs in Mariano’s stores, and her Farmhands. The music reflects the festival’s emphasis on animals and the environment and sprinkles in some classics even little city-slickers are sure to know (Old MacDonald, anyone?).
“It’s really just an opportunity for kids to hang out and learn a little bit more and engage with good food in a way that’s kind of pint-sized,” says Purple Asparagus `Head Spear’ Melissa Graham. “Our cornerstone is good food.”
And who knows, as you browse all the booths throughout the rest of the fest, you might just convince your brood to try something new–even if it’s a little more green or healthy-looking than they might usually like.