Hey, so here’s a crazy fact: There’s a Korean Festival about 20 minutes away from me, and it’s been held every year for the last five years. I didn’t find out about it until last Wednesday, though, so I was woefully underprepared to enjoy the awesomeness! I’ll share what I was able to see, however, because I was absolutely entranced pretty much from the moment I got there.
I was under the impression the festival opened at 10 am. This was not the right impression, and after my daughter and I spent a good 15 minutes walking around in the 40 degree windy weather, we decided to retreat to a cafe we saw on the way in.
BEST. DECISION. EVER.
The cafe is called Cocohodo (www.cocohodousa.com) and they sell these walnut-shaped pastries filled with a walnut-red bean paste. I love dark, earthy flavors and these pastries definitely fit the bill! They were just sweet enough to offset the red bean flavor, and very very rich. I had four of them and a glass of water and I wasn’t hungry again until lunch.
Being mindful of my daughter’s introverted nature, we chose to sit around the corner instead of in the main eating area, and were treated to an excellent view of the pastries being made. It was as fascinating as watching a Krispy Kreme process — the conveyor belt, the automatic piping for the filling, and the one diligent human putting a real piece of walnut into each pastry and flipping the finished ones into a container. The trip to the festival was worth it just for this experience!
When we had finished eating, we wandered back to the festival and strolled around the mostly set up booths. The food row looked mouthwatering, and the kpop merch booths, once they were up, were three-deep in teenage girls the entire hour and a half we were there. We watched a giant bowl of bibimbap being made while waiting for the opening speeches to start. It smelled so good!
The festival was supporting the 2018 Winter Games in PyeongChang and had a VR ski booth set up, complete with smoke machines and fake snow. We didn’t get to play, but it looked pretty fun! There were some Olympic mascots wandering around, too — they were adorable.
There were several people in historical costumes, which finally made sense after the opening speeches were given and the King’s Parade began. The parade culminated in a drum dance in front of the stage — I loved it.
Unfortunately, it was at that point that we had to leave, but I managed to acquire a program and someone pressed a card for vitamin shots in my hand before we left. Looking over the events page, my daughter and I agreed that next year we would plan better and leave the day free to enjoy the entire festival. Can’t wait to go back!
See you there next year, drama fans!
Karie the Maknae
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi