There’s more to the Kamloops Tomato Festival than just tomatoes. Which isn’t to say there won’t be tomatoes, because there will be.
In fact, there are more than 60 varieties of tomatoes in the world and people will be able to sample many of them at Saturday’s festival, said organizer R. David Williams.
“One of the major things that people come for is the tasting area,” said Williams. “When you think of it, people come from all over the world to live here and they bring their particular kind of tomato.”
Williams didn’t know how many varieties of tomatoes would be at the festival. Submission were still coming in on Friday.
Off the top of his head, he knows there will be cherry, beefsteak, Italian, Roma and heirloom, he said. His personal favourites are beefsteaks.
“I like to make a tomato sandwich with mayonnaise,” he said.
As with the first two festivals, a $2-entry fee affords people the opportunity to sample the tomatoes and learn from master gardeners how to save seeds. Williams said prized tomato seeds will be available for purchase.
“There’s also a contest for the biggest and weirdest and most perfect (tomato), et cetera. That’s also kind of a hit, too,” said Williams, a professor emeritus at Thompson Rivers University.
Adding to the fun will be a cook-off featuring chefs from Indian Aroma, The Smorgasbord, Accolades, The Lunch Box, Terra and Table 14 out of Salmon Arm.
There will also be a historical display about two tomato canneries that once existed in Kamloops. This includes equipment used in canning and preservation.
The festival runs from 8 a.m. to noon at the Farmer’s Market.