AF 2009

Aestival Festival 2009

First thing was first – the theme. After careful consideration, many get togethers, arguments, and Chinese takeaways we decided on ‘Countries’. It was fun, easy to do but gave the scope for to push the fancy dress element.

Having never undertaken putting on a festival before, it was a rather daunting prospect. Having borrowed, bought and stolen every item we needed we took the Friday off, and got together the night before for an early start (eh Miles?!). Arriving on the Friday morning at the Golden Heart, we got involved.

Poles went up along with the now infamous Aestival Festival banner, chairs and tables moved around the marquee, the mothership tent was launched, and games laid out and ran through.

That evening in pub there was much trepidation about the next day from the organisers. Although, that seem to decease as the amount of fine West County ale and cider increased, and a few festival goers arrived and shared in the frivolities.

That night the heavens opened.

It rained very hard that evening, keeping most people awake, but not as much as the organisers who were (I can safely say) very concerned that this thing they had created was not going blow up before it even began.

When the morning came, with fuzzy heads, we emerged from our waterlogged tents to overcast skies. The look on our faces was ‘let’s just go stay in the pub all day’ but we were not deterred.

We were worried that the rain was going to come back, but cracked on with finalising the first game and directed newly arriving Aestivalers to set up their tents and be ready for breakfast and the briefing.

Suddenly, things started to look up as teams got together and into their fancy dress (the weather was still holding). We had the following teams in their costumes:

• Jordan (dressed as Katie Price)
• Cuba (as inmates of Guantanamo Bay)
• Sweden (in the national football kit)
• Australia (in shorts, t-shirts and hats with corks)
• Mexico (in Sombreros and ponchos)
• Iran (chav terrorists)
• USA (cowboys and cowgirls)
• Bulgaria (odd)
• Equador
• France (garlic, bread, stripes and berets…but of course!)
• Morocco (in fez’s)
• Tonga
• Japan (T-shirt tastic)

• Judges – dressed as farmer judges

We opened with a quiz that every team had to answer throughout the day, then each team were to take part in four games, some mental but most fairly physical.

Walk the plank (the opening game – our first ever!) – this game involved 2 teams racing each other holding a plank of wood to their feet using ropes. Sounds easier that it is! Check out the video

Skill Set – the 4 games included football challenge, hit the famous person, duck bobbing and darts.

Catch a Bus – team contestants had to negoatiate an assault course with dress up stages whilst going under crawl nets, over hay bails, dashing with space hoppers and spinning around a pole.

Tug of War – the old favourite.



Following the award for best team, we awarded best costume which went to Cuba for their Guantanamo Bay outfits.

That night we BBQ’d and then the evening’s festivities started. This began with the 2nd round of Welly Wanging (who can throw the Welly the furthest) carrying on from GRRR where a certain Mr Miles Hartwell just managed to take the crown from a highly competitive Liddo.

That evening we drafted a local band, the amazing Mango Factory! This 8 piece funk band hail from Bristol and lay down some of the funkiest grooves you’re likely to here this side of the Avon. They entertained us into the wee hours with much dancing and hand waving.

The night finished as they all do…with everyone crammed into the mothership chatting, making merry and keeping the others up. Alan was born (more of him later….).