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Pavilion at the Park Bedford

Bedford Park

locally produced, seasonal food. We cook simple and imaginative dishes and high quality British cuisine.

Filtering by Tag: The Kiosk at The Park

Doodles at The Kiosk - for charity!

It's NATIONAL DOODLE DAY tomorrow! What a wonderful national celebration - all in aid of the Epilepsy Action  charity. Doodling is fab, because even if you're not the finest artist in the universe, you can still do a very brilliant doodle. And, it helps pass the time in life's less-interesting scenarios too. (Afterall, who HASN'T drawn a masterpiece or three whilst on hold on the phone to a Very Dull Call Centre?) national_doodle_day_logo

So we've decided to celebrate the day of the doodle too. All day at The Kiosk at the Park, there will be paper, pens, and space on the doodle doors. (That's just the regular door of the Kiosk, by the way.) If you, your child, your dog or your arty friend want to pop by and draw a doodle, we'll stick it to out doodle doors. We'll even pick a winner! If you do draw a doodle, we'll ask that you leave a doodle donation in the pot, which we'll send off to Epilepsy Action.

If you can't make it to the Kiosk - you can still join in. There are forms available to download on the website here, which you can send off with a donation to be entered into the National Doodle Day competition! - You could even win your doodle made into a cuddly reality by Lucy Moose!

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And National Doodle Day is made even more delightful by the involvement of the legendary Lord Dodo,

The famous Dodo-Pad

manufacturer of the very finest Dodo Pads, eminently suitable for doodling!

If you need some inspiration, just look what local illustrator David Litchfield achieved when he did a drawing a day for a year.

Emergency Poet at the Park!

We have news of an exciting-sounding emergency service coming your way very soon! The Emergency Poet is the world’s first and only mobile poetic first aid service, and she will be driving her vintage ambulance to the Kiosk at the Park on Sunday 21st July, from 11am-4pm. Described as a 'mix of the serious and the theatrical', the ambulance will also contain skulls, jars full of eyeballs and none other than Nurse Verse! Sound intriguing? There's more! After a consultation, you will be diagnosed and prescribed some great poetry, perhaps in the form of poemcetamol... Image

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The emergency poet's secret identity is Deborah Alma, an experienced workshop facilitator who has, amongst many other things, delivered sessions on using poetry to help communicate with people with dementia for The Courtyard Theatre, Hereford. Deborah has a degree and a masters in creative writing, and is lead writer at The West Midlands Writers Squad, which teaches creative writing to young people in Ludlow. We're really excited about her visiting the Kiosk, and look forward to welcoming her on Sunday, along with her poetry and her eyeballs!

The Emergency Poet is just one of the many Bedfringe events that are happening all over Bedford during the next few weeks. Have a look at what else is on here: loads of comedy, theatre, and shows for children.  And if you've been to a brilliant Bedfringe event and would like to review it - why not write a post for the citizen bedford blog?

See you on Sunday for an emergency appointment with some poetry!

Storytime at The Kiosk

The latest in our line-up of SuperStar Storytellers at The Kiosk will be none other than Alex Levene, director of The Place Theatre. Alex has read at Storytime before, so is a seasoned professional. Do not be alarmed by his beard. Or his paper hat. Or, his expression in this photo. He is an actor, OK? Image

Storytime will be at The Kiosk at 9.30am, bank holiday Monday - 6th May. The weather forecast is great for once*- so kick off your Bank Holiday with a brilliant story session and a early energy burst for the kids in the park. Coffee, tea, cakes and cookies will be on hand, as well as milk and biscuits for the children. Dogs, bikes, scooters, mums, dads, brothers, sisters and grandparents all very welcome.

Alex will not only be reading a story, but also announcing some VERY special news about a brand new and very exciting project coming to The Kiosk this summer. Be the first to know the news. We are, quite frankly, GIDDY with excitement...

*That's our final word on the matter in case we accidentally jinx the good weather.

Mini Golf at the Kiosk

ImageRussell Park is full of interesting things to do: adventure playground, climbing trees, space for rugby, football, hide and seek, scooting, bike-riding, dog walking, tennis, table tennis and MINI GOLF. Also known as 'pitch and putt', there are different ways to describe it - but basically a mini 18-hole course, right here in the park!

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If you're looking for something to keep yourself or your offspring busy for an hour or so - why not try your luck on the course, just behind the kiosk!  All the equipment is available to hire from the Kiosk. It's cheap, fun, and outdoors - just think of all the vitamin D* you'll be soaking up whilst aiming for that hole in one! Or two, or three. Or, let's face it, these things take time to perfect.

Three (or 4, if you count a comedy shopping opportunity) reasons to play mini Golf in Russell Park:

Reason 1: We found this great review of the course on this blog here - written by Richard Gottfried, who is a British Minigolf Association (BMGA) Tour Pro, Great Britain International Minigolfer & a member of the 2008 BMGA British Club Champions – the Midlands Minigolf Club. So he knows his stuff. He says 'the course is in excellent condition with good equipment and scorecards. Last time out I scored a 48(+12), with a hole-in-one on the 15th hole and this time I scored a slightly better 46(+10) and an Ace on the 14th hole.'

So there's a score to beat!

Reason 2: The Mayor does it. As does 3 Counties Radio DJ Nick Coffer. It's basically a celebrity sport.

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Reason 3: You could introduce it as a lunchtime activity for your office or a group of colleagues. Think of the benefits of getting fresh air, some time out of the office AND the chance to fit in some always-welcome  team-building and socializing time. Oh, and the Kiosk just happens to be a great place for lunch...Here are the guys from Woods Hardwick at the Kiosk for a bit of lunchtime mini-golf. We'd love to see some more local firms following suit - we're planning to start a lunchtime league, just to give you that competitive edge to your lunchtime putting.  Give us a call on 01234 271877 to find out more.

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Reason 4: If you get good enough, you could buy yourself this t-shirt:

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*the Kiosk can guarantee you nice cakes and tea afterwards, but not sunshine. It's just not in our remit, OK?

 

Ethical Addictions at The Kiosk: Great Coffee, Great Story.

Here at the Kiosk we serve a very special kind of coffee. If you've ever popped by for a cup of it, you really are part of something pretty amazing. We serve Ethical Addictions Coffee.

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Ethical Addictions Coffee is a remarkable story of a business setting out to do something very straightforward. Just something simple and fair, but something that is at the same time, completely extraordinary. The company is founded on the belief that ethical business does not have to compromise on quality, and doesn't have to be significantly more expensive for the consumer.

Inspired by a few years living on the West Coast of Canada, where there was an abundance of 'great coffee with great stories', founders Ian and Dave came up with the idea of setting up a coffee brand that dealt direct with the growers. No middle-men or complicated supply chains. Coffee, Ian told us, is the most traded commodity in the world after oil. Often there are 7 or 8 links in the supply chain, all adding to the cost of the products, but leaving many of the farmers in poverty.

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When you think about it, cutting out the supply chain makes perfect sense. The farmers get a fair wage for their work - far higher than they would otherwise - and consumers pay no more than they would for any other coffee. Ethical Addictions pay the farmers the same amount as they would pay coffee suppliers in the UK. The difference is, of course, that the farmer keeps the whole amount. This also means that Ethical Addictions is not a luxury brand, it's an affordable alternative to other coffee brands.

It is also not a Fair Trade coffee. For the villagers to register with the Fair Trade brand, they or the farm would have to put up about $1800, which, as Ian pointed out, is more than the average yearly wages of the villagers. In places like this, where the need is so great and the villages fall through the gaps of Fair Trade, Ethical Addictions is making a real difference. “Fair Trade made consumers think again twenty years ago,” says Ian “maybe it's time to think again now”.

He describes the business as “a passion; part business, part social enterprise. We're not doing anything amazing, we're just doing the right thing. We can't change the world, but we can change things for families in a couple of villages.” And yet, depressingly, even now the business model sounds quite revolutionary.

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On their website, Ethical Addictions tell the stories of their coffees. This is the one about Mountain Top Coffee, and Bente. Bente is the manager of Machare Farm, who they credit with the vision, as well as helping forge the relationships with growers that has given Ethical Addictions the chance to make a difference. Bente introduced them to two small villages high up the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro in East Africa who had no route to market for their high-quality coffee, and just had to sell to any supplier who happened to come along; meaning that they were getting an insultingly low price for the coffee they had worked so hard to produce.

With some investment from Marchare Farm, Ethical Addictions, and other funding, the villagers were able to produce their own coffee. Now, a few years later, those same villagers have been able to put their children through school for the first time. They've been able to save to repair their houses, and buy livestock. They are producing exceptional Arabicancoffee: 'Dark and smooth with a velvety cocoa and caramel finish.'

Some of Ian's favourite Ethical Addictions moments come from the trip he made to Machare Farm back in December 2011. “Four or five years of supporting the farms and workers has made such a tangible difference,” he explains. “There were people who said 'the wage that we're earning means our children have been able to go to school,' or 'we've been able to have a new roof put on our hut'. These are real peoples' lives that we're helping to change, long-term, for the better."

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This is Desiana Pauli, talking about how Ethical Addictions has changed things for her and her family: "Before, we used to all sleep in the same room on the same bed. Now, I could build a bedroom for my five children so that they have more space. I could also pay the school fees for all the five children, including the uniforms and the books, etc."

And you are helping those same families too, just by drinking our coffee at the Kiosk. Great coffee, great story. 

And The Winner Is......

Dogs (2) March 2013 saw Best in Show at Crufts being won by Jilly, the Basset Griffon Vendeen who beat more than 20,000 dogs over the four-day competition to take the coveted title.

Meanwhile, in a quiet corner of a little park by the Great River Ouse in Bedford, Lorraine Lotan from Happy Dog Training in Clapham was deliberating over a very different ‘Best in Show’.  She had kindly agreed to judge The Kiosk’s inaugural ‘Canines At The Kiosk’ competition and taking a break from her work with the charity Canine Partners, she headed to Russell Park to focus on her judging.  While our photographic contest didn’t attract the same sort of numbers that entered Crufts, Lorraine’s task of picking winners for the six categories was nonetheless a difficult one!

“Thank you for asking me to judge – all the photos were great and all the dogs were winners” said Lorraine – but we managed to pin her down and after plenty of Lattes and a few of our signature Malteser Squares,  she narrowed it down and has come up with the very deserving winners!

And, much as they do at other high profile awards ceremonies, we’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who took the time to email images and upload them onto facebook, we had a lot of fun and we hope you did too.

Congratulations if you are a winner, and commiserations if you haven't won a prize this time, but fear not, there will be other competitions to enter and other opportunities to win.

We’d also like to thank all those that have donated prizes – Pets at Home, Aspera Pet Services, Acorn House Vets Practice, Adrian Bullers Photography and KJ Photography. You can see the winning entries below, and all the others on our facebook page!

Look-A-Like: Gracie - Two Lambs in Honour of Easter, entered by Sara Gilbert

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Let Sleeping Dogs Lie: Our Alfie with Bailey, entered by Karen Chamberlain

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Man's Best Friend: Harley & Noodle in boat, entered by Kimberley Boreham

Man's Best Friend

Top Dog & Best in Show: Yassko & Cerys, entered by Wendy Halling

Yassko and Cerys

In the Dog House: Baxter, entered by Alexandra Ward

Baxter - well and truly in the doghouse

Puppy Power: Heidi Trampolining, entered by Fiona Swift

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Half Term Fun and Games

If you are having a 'staycation' half term, and feel overwhelmed at the prospect of a pricey marathon of entertainment-finding, don't worry! We have done the hard work for you and scouted out some fun, and crucially inexpensive things to do over the next week, all in and around Russell Park in Bedford!  Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to see how many of the 10 activities we have found you can tick off in the week.

1. RUSSELL PARK 

Come down to play in Russell Park and stop off at The Kiosk– we have lots of exciting things planned for the week – as well as the usual tea, coffee, cakes, goodies, milk & biscuits and of course our famous Hot Chocolate Marshmallow Mountain Explosions!

Monday 18th 9.30am - join us for Songtime with Kris from The Frogs Chorus

Wednesday 20th 11am - 3.00pm come down and do some badgemaking with Celene

Friday 22nd 2pm - 4pm Facepainting with the lovely, and extremely talented, Sophie

2. IN THE SWIM

Even if you're not going away somewhere hot this half-term, you can still visit Bedford's very own Tropical Paradise – The Oasis Beach Pool. Open for Holiday Supersplash Sessions from 10 - 4.30, Monday to Friday, with off-peak swimming sessions from 4.30 - 7.30. There are some great offers on admission prices available here, valid until the 28th February.

3. DISCOVER A WHOLE NEW WORLD

Not only is the Bedford Central Library free, it is also warm and dry, (always a bonus for days when the weather doesn't behave itself.) Let the kids have a rummage through the bookshelves, while you sit in the storytelling chair and remember the days of Bernard Cribbens and Jackanory!  Peruse the notice board which is a mine of information or escape to another world by burying your own head in a book! There is also a great coffee shop where you can sit and watch the world go by.  

Wednesday 20th:11.00 - 12.00

Chinese New Year Storytime - Fabulous stories and crafts - fun all ages.

Friday 22nd1.00 - 4.00

Pitta Puppets - Drop in and make puppet kings and queens with Jim Morris.

Chatterbooks is a group for 8 to 12 year olds which runs every three weeks with crafts, games, quizzes and more! The next meeting is Saturday 2nd March at 2.30.

4CRAFTY PLAN #1

Visit The Kiln on Bedford High Street. Call in, choose some pottery – loads of shapes and sizes available to paint and decorate and they will fire it for you, ready to collect a week later.  There is also a lovely coffee shop and tea room - not that we need caffeine to enjoy ourselves you understand!

5. SAY CHEESE

If you're not going away, photography is a great way to see familiar places in a totally new light, and get a new perspective on where you live.  If you like a challenge, we are running a photographic competition at The Kiosk, the closing date for entries being March 10th. To tie in with Crufts 2013, your subject needs to be of the Canine variety, but If you don't already own a dog, why not phone a friend who does? See if you can go for a walk with them and their four-legged friend and take some pics to enter Canines at The Kiosk. For some handy tips on animal photography, have a read of this guide for children on the National Geographic site, happy snapping!  For competition categories, terms and conditions read here!

6CRAFTY PLAN #2

Buy a Craft Kit from Bedford's The School of Craft – there is free delivery on craft kits this week, which include all you need to make your own Mexican Wrestlers Mask, or Modernist Flower Display! The boxes fold out into a mini-magazine with full instructions, extra activities and lots of information.

7. MOVIE MAGIC

Wreck it Ralph (times available here) is sure to be a hit with the younger contingent, on over half term at Cineworld, just a short walk from Russell Park. For very cheap cinema-fun, check out the Saturday morning kids' films.  At only £1 per person it's a bargain, and did you know, if you book online you can save 10%?!

8. FLAPJACK-TASTIC

One of the most popular bite-sized treats we sell at The Kiosk is Barbara's Triple-Tested-Flapjack.  Flapjack is perfect for a 'cooking with the kids' morning. Find our top recipe suggestion here.  (If it does all go horribly wrong, you can always come and taste how it should be done and buy some of Barbara's Flapjack at The Kiosk!)

9TOTALLY RUBBISH

Have a Spring clear out! Recycle any clothes that have been outgrown by donating them to one of the fabulous local charity shops. Other bits and bobs that you find cluttering up the house can also often be put to good use.  Challenge the kids to create a work of art from a load of rubbish - there are loads of ideas on the fabulous cbbc show Totally Rubbish.  And for more up-cycling ideas for kids to try (or for you to have a go at on their behalf!) have a look at this great Pintrest board. Pinspirational! 

10. LETS GO FLY A KITE

If you don't have the wherewithall to hire a Mary-Poppins-type-nanny for the day, (tempting as that might be) then do as the great lady herself advised and take your kite to Russell Park! If you didn't know, Russell Park is the home of the Kite Festival which will be back for the weekend of the 25th - 27th May 2013. Just enough time to get some practice in! All you need is a kite and bit of wind! (If you don't have a kite make your own!)

Have a wonderful Half Term - and we do hope you enjoy our activity challenge!  We'd love to know how well you did and what your top half term survival tips are too.  So head down to the Kiosk for a catch up and a reviving cup of coffee - we're open 8.30 - 5.00 all week!

Summer opening times

pavilion open 9-5pm
the window stays open until 6pm

last food orders 3:30pm

Autumn opening times
as of October 1st

pavilion open 9-4pm
the window stays open until 5pm

last food orders 3:15pm

Mondays: Café opens at 10am

we are open 7 days a week and dogs are welcome on our heated veranda during the winter months

We occasionally close early for private bookings. Please always call us to book a table & avoid being disappointed!

01234 351104

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