In late November we entered Ilkley Park to build our biggest event of the year, Ilkley Christmas Teepees. We opened our doors from 1st through until 22nd December, Wednesday - Sunday, welcoming around 10,000 guests, who enjoyed the festive food, drinks and Santa’s Grotto.
Santa (the real one of course!) was in his Teepee Grotto every Friday, Saturday and Sunday - bringing gifts and festive joy to the children of Ilkley and Yorkshire. We received a great review from one of Stray FM Mumblers (Mummy Blogger!) who attended with her children one afternoon to see Santa and to dine with us.
Massive thank you to Stray FM for all their support and a huge shout out to Ivory Dental Practice for being our main sponsor. The event contributes massively to the local economy - our staff are all local and on national living wage, we source all products and services locally wherever possible. We even offered a local residential home a complimentary visit to help their guests get in to the festive spirit.
Our mobile bar took residency for three weeks in the Christmas Teepees, serving our own festive cocktail menu, a range of beers including Ilkley Brewery's very own Mary Christmas, not to mention a full range of wines and spirits. The best seller by far was our “on tap” mulled wine - selling over 1,500 cups equating to over 500 bottles of wine! Marshmallows for toasting over our open fires sold like hot cakes, coming in as the 2nd best seller with just under 1,500 bags. That’s over 60kg of light fluffy sugary pockets of air for toasting. We had a fantastic sponsor in Ilkley Brewery, they were our sole supplier of cask and canned ale and all their beers went down a treat! Once again our very own Nine Poles 4% British lager sold well with tons of good reviews of it over the bar.
This year's festive menu went down a treat - getting 5* reviews over and over again on our comment cards and Facebook page. The food looked and tasted amazing. Time and time again guests were baffled by the restaurant standard food being served in a tent, in a park!
Ribble Valley Group prepared, cooked and served a full menu throughout our three weeks in the Ilkley. The best sellers were clear - around 250 Teepee burgers, 180 kids Breaded Chicken, 175 Teepee Sharers not to mention over 1,000 hot chocolates!
The Ribble Valley Group are like family when it comes to the Ilkley Christmas Teepees. We reside with them onsite 24/7 to deliver this amazing event. December in particular highlights that together we are unstoppable! Whether it's repairing the generator, heating or lighting, taking each other’s deliveries, sharing staff, administering first aid or fixing plumbing issues - between Anthony (MD of Ribble Valley group) and Dan (MD of BAR Events UK) there's no problem that can't be fixed.
Thanks to all our staff for their incredibly hard work over December and to Anthony and his team for being amazing! We look forward to working with them throughout the summer at many weddings and festivals.
We hope to be back in Riverside Gardens next year as we really do LOVE Ilkley! Thank you!!!
Image credit: Heidi Marfitt Photography