DO I NEED TO PURCHASE A TICKET TO ATTEND THE 2019 MIDWEST TEA FESTIVAL?
Yes, each person attending must have purchased a ticket in order to attend. Your ticket is good for either or both days of the event. You will purchase on our Buy Tickets page, which will appear on the main menu as soon as tickets go on sale in July.
WHY PAY TO "JUST GO SHOPPING"?
A few reasons. Mostly because this isn't just a shopping event.
1. This is an educational and entertainment event with shopping included. Our speakers on both stages and our cafe hosts will be doing their best to give you a ton of tea knowledge from their years of experience. The vendors at the booths will talk to you and also give you more tea information than you had when you came in.
2. The goodie bags, their contents and the tasting cups alone are valued at more than the price of the single day ticket.
3. A percentage of your ticket purchase goes to the charitable partner for the year.
4. This event costs approximately $20000 to put on each year (legal permitting, insurance, equipment and venue rental, a lot of water, goodie bags, cups...). We can't get the vendors to pay for all of that - it isn't cost effective for them as businesses. So if you want all these great tea merchants and artisans to come visit the Midwest every year and bring their awesome teas with them, we have to keep their costs low.
5. This is an all-volunteer run event. You aren't paying anyone's salary with your ticket because no one gets a salary! We are just a tiny group of tea nerds who spend insane amounts of time putting this event together each year!
6. You, along with the volunteers, are helping to build a regional and local tea community. If we can continue to show that good quality teas are something we value having access to, then we can support more local tea events throughout the year. It also may encourage local busineses to have good quality teas on offer or prompt an entrepreneur to start up another tea shop in town.
DOES MY CHILD NEED A TICKET?
Children under 12 do not need a ticket but they will not receive a tasting cup, either, even a disposable one. If you want your child under 12 to have a tasting cup and taste teas on their own, then yes, they do need a ticket.
Children over 12 need a ticket in order to attend and they will receive a tasting cup.
WHAT DO I GET WITH MY TICKET PURCHASE?
You get admission to the vendor floor and access to all of the Main and Specialty Stage presentations. You also get access to all the oodles of tea you can taste on the vendor floor.
The first 1000 advance ticket purchasers will receive a high quality porcelain tasting cup ($10-$12 value) and a resuable shopping tote filled with tea samples, coupons and other items.
If you wait until the day of the event to purchase a ticket or if you are not in the first 1000 to purchase a ticket in advance, you may not get a goodie bag and porcelain tasting cup, but you will always get a disposable tasting cup so you are not left out of all the tea there is to taste!
WHAT IS A TEA BAR EXPERIENCE?
A tea bar experience is a 15 minute small group session. You and 10 others will belly up to the tea bar for special, limited tastings with your tea bar host. Teas will vary depending on tea bar host but will be exclusive releases, unique or rare teas or will be brief introductions to types of tea or tea regions.
HOW DO I ATTEND A TEA BAR EXPERIENCE & DOES IT COST EXTRA?
No, a Tea Bar Experience does not cost extra. When you arrive at the festival, you can visit the Tea Bar ticket table and get a ticket for a time to attend later that day.
Tickets are given out on a first come, first served basis and are limited to 1 per guest per day. This does mean that not everyone will get to attend a Tea Bar Experience session as we are limited by time and space!
HOW DO I ATTEND A WORKSHOP & DOES IT COST EXTRA?
Workshops do cost extra and the price is set by the workshop instructor.
You can purchase a ticket to a workshop at the same time you purchase your festival admission ticket. You can also return to the ticketing site after purchasing your festival admission ticket and purchase workshop tickets.
You must have a festival admission ticket in order to be able to attend a workshop. Even if you purchase a workshop ticket, if you don't have a festival admission ticket, you will not be allowed to go to the workshop.
IS THERE A CHARGE TO ATTEND THE MAIN STAGE PRESENTATIONS & DO I NEED TO SIGN UP TO ATTEND THEM?
Your purchased admission to the festival allows you to sit in on any of the numerous lecture and demonstration format presentations that will occur each day. There is no additional charge for any Main Stage presentation and you do not need to sign up to attend them.
The only limitation to attending these presentations is the city fire code. We are only allowed to have so many people in each room at a time. The Main Stage will seat 250.
You do not have to be in the room when the presentation starts and you do not have to stay for all of it, either. You are free to come and go as you choose. All we ask is that you keep noise and disruption to a minimum when entering or leaving a presentation room out of courtesy to other listeners and to the speaker.
WILL THERE BE FOOD FOR PURCHASE?
Yes! The venue has a restaurant that serves American standard fare. There are also a few restaurants within walking distance such as Church's Chicken and Peach Tree Buffet. About 4 miles from the venue is LC's Barbecue, a tasty Kansas City institution. As long as you get a wristband at the Festival Info table you can return to the venue throughout the day.
WHERE IS THE FESTIVAL HELD?
Our 2018 venue is once again Ararat Shrine Temple's Bennet Auditorium at 5100 Ararat Drive, Kansas City, MO 64129. This is south of I-70 off of 435 Highway, about 7 minutes south and west of Arrowhead Stadium.
WHERE DO I PARK?
The venue has a large parking lot with capacity for hundreds of vehicles. You may need to circle around the back of the building in order to get a spot so if you don't see one right away, keep driving and you'll surely find one!
IS THE AREA AROUND THE VENUE SAFE?
Yes! The venue premises and parking lots are monitored by security and by surveillance cameras. You are there in a public place with hundreds of other people in broad daylight. However, as with any parking lot, use common sense. Lock your vehicle and don't leave belongings or bags in plain view on your car seats - put them in your trunk instead.
IS THE VENUE HANDICAPPED ACCESSIBLE?
Yes, the venue has handicapped parking and is handicapped accessible. The vendor floor and one workshop and one tasting cafe room is on the ground floor. The Main Stage presentations and 2 workshop rooms are on the second floor but are accessible via elevator. Two tasting cafe areas are up a short flight of stairs.
If you have mobility issues, please contact us before selecting any tasting cafes or workshops so we can guide you in choosing one that is accessible to you.
IS THE VENUE/EVENT SUITABLE FOR STROLLERS/CHILDREN?
The venue has trafficways wide enough for strollers, but the crowds can get bunched up now and then and there are a lot of people at the event pretty much all day long. Keep that in mind when planning to bring a child in a stroller.
There are not really any activities that are engaging for very young children but you are welcome to bring your child if you think they would find it interesting. There's never a time too early to get someone interested in tea!
IS THE EVENT HELD RAIN OR SHINE?
Yes. The venue is an indoor venue so regardless of weather, the event will be held.
WHERE CAN I FIND A LIST OF HOTELS FOR THE AREA?
If you look at our Plan Your Visit page, our official hotel partner is listed. Otherwise, searching using Arrowhead Stadium as a landmark will tell you what hotels are in the area.
HOW DO I VOLUNTEER TO HELP?
You are awesome! See our Volunteer page!
HOW DO I BECOME A VENDOR?
We welcome inquiries from potential vendors. Contact us through our Contact form here on the site.
WHO IS THE MIDWEST TEA FESTIVAL?
The Festival is produced by Taste All the Teas, a specialty event planning service owned by Nicole Burriss. Nicole had the vision of a tea festival closer to home than east or west coast so she did the initial organization and put together the first two years on her own. She had the help of a volunteer for the first year with some initial marketing efforts and another volunteer in the second year with day of voluteer organization. (Thank you, Alex & Austin!)
The event could not succeed without the assistance of a dedicated group of generous volunteers nor without the participation of our speakers and session hosts.
While Taste All The Teas is not a non-profit, the festival itself is run solely by volunteer effort. No one draws a salary, not even Nicole. Any profits are put back into the festival for the next year and when and if excess funds are generated, a larger donation will be given to the charitable partner for the year.