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Thank you to everyone who made Dumpling Day an incredible success!

Coinciding with the Home exhibition by Ukrainian photographers and National Refugee Week, Rochdale’s Dumpling Day offered a feast of activities and flavors, bringing our communities together. Attendees sampled international varieties of dumplings, participated in exciting dumpling-themed activities, and enjoyed vibrant music celebrating our diverse community. This early summer event also connected to the historical tradition of Wakes Day in Lancashire mill towns – an annual holiday for mill workers that saw music, dancing and a festival feel throughout the town.

With around 150 attendees, the event celebrated our vibrant community through dumpling tasting, cross-stitching, crocheting, and amazing live music from various performers. Activities included dumpling tasting from Ukrainian, Bangladeshi and Nigerian cooks, making our own Kurdish and Chinese dumplings with Heart&Parcel, decorative saltdough dumpling making, designing our own dumpling characters and stories and hearing from artists, cooks and Touchstones staff in a Global Café.

The Global café presented an opportunity for people to talk to different contributors participating in Dumpling Day. Each contributor sat at a different café style table. Visitors were invited to spend a set amount of time at each table getting to know their host before moving on to the next seat. 

Dumpling Day is an integral part of the Dining Room project, which explores our local collections via the lens of food, transforming what used to be a mostly unchanging museum display into an evolving collections display. Through working with 20 Community Curators, we are discovering and sharing stories of our heritage that are currently missing from our collections, using the unifying theme of food. Dumpling Day embodies this mission by highlighting the cultural value of dumplings and celebrating this with our wonderfully diverse community. Thank you to our team, partners, community curators and everyone who made this day possible!

This event was in partnership with Rochdale Borough Council and was made possible through the Heritage Fund and the Arts Council England fund.