Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Fun for Museums at Night!

Last Friday saw 2 very different events at Wakefield Museum for Museums at Night. Museums at Night is an annual campaign during which museums around the country open their doors for out-of-hours events.

Our events included 'Museums at Knight' - a family event.

A knight in shining armour told tales of daring adventure!
Wakefield Museum and children’s library (at Wakefield One) were visited by a medieval knight who enthralled younger and older visitors alike with his interactive tale of dragon slaying and princess rescuing adventures.  Children aged 3 - 12 were invited to join the knight to help tell tales of his medieval quests.

Down in the museum itself visitors took part in a dragon themed trail and crafts.  With paper dragons and dragon mask making the museum was sure to require our knight's help...
Visitors were encouraged to come dressed for the event!

Comments from visitors included:
 ‘very well organised the boys loved it, thank you’

‘He was fab, please use him again’

‘Good for parents too!’

Thanks to our Medieval Knight for his story telling and interactive adventure.

On the same evening, we also had a very different event, but just as fun!  To come to an adult talk on historical vegetables called 'Flatulence and Phlegm', you would perhaps expect something a little different...

Dr Annie Gray, food historian, is a wonderfully entertaining speaker, who had her audience enthralled, inspired and giggling in equal measure!
Dr Annie Gray with the foods made to historic recipes
Annie explained that the range of vegetables available in the past was greater than it is today. Plants which are difficult to cultivate, or take a lot of space, now have very limited availability - such as the huge, beautiful cardoon which needs to be blanched to prevent it from tasting of cat wee!

We learned the virtues of samphire (and its correct pronunciation), that tea made with cleavers was supposed to keep you slim (but tastes 'green'), and that carrot puddings made from hollowed-out carrots filled with a pudding mixture aren't worth the effort (and look like severed fingers!).
Everyone gets stuck into the food samples after the talk!
Annie also explained that artificially colouring foods isn't a recent phenomenon - spring butter, produced before the cows go into pasture, is rather white, and so was coloured with carrot or saffron to make it yellow.

A final, random snippet - apparently hares have ear wax!  (Just to show that a talk on historic vegetables isn't just about rabbit food!)

Thanks again Annie - a very enjoyable evening!

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