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International Friendship Festival 2010

Saturday 03 Jul 10 - Sunday 04 Jul 10
11am - 5pm

Northern Area Playing Fields

Sunderland?s favourite family festival returns on Saturday3 and Sunday4 July to celebrate friendship with individuals and communities from Sunderland and around the world.
The free event takes place at the Northern Area Playing Fields, Washington, from 11am - 5pm. As well as featuring the popular kite festival, the event plays host toa varied musical programme, including marching brassbands, World Cup themed activities, children's crafts, tasty food stalls and a fun fair.
Experienced kite fliers who would like to attend the festival as an official kite flier must register in advance by contacting .
Trade spaces are still available for craft and local produce stalls.For an application form please contactElaineHannington on 0191 561 8443 or email


Infinite Arts will once again deliver an exciting programme of kites and exhibitions, bringing together kite makers and artists from many countries around the world.

In 2009, kite fliers travelled from as far as USA, Canada, Tasmania, France, Spain, Germany, Austria, India, Sardinia, Holland and the Netherlands to join the celebration. The world class fliersincluded Heinrich Hohmann from Germany, Alessia Marrocu from Sardinia, Robert Trepanier from Canada, Claude and Jose Comallonga from France and Mike Mosman from the USA,

Mike Mosman who is Vice President of the Wings Over Washington (WOW) Kite Club, one of the USA?s premier kite clubs near Washington DC spent last year celebrating Independence Day in Washington in Sunderland. He wrote;

?The 2009 Sunderland Festival was a smashing success. For me it was even more special because I was treated like a VIP when I got there. The fact is, I just don?t get that kind of attention at home, and it certainly makes it worth the trip over. On top of that, because July 4 actually fell on Saturday, the annual ceremonies at Old Washington Hall were held on a festival day, and I had a special invitation to attend. Back on the field I got to fly with Steven Hoath and the Flying Squad. I now consider him and his group old friends. I got to pull out my latest kite and show it off. The Sunderland International Friendship Festival is now one of my favorite events. I?m going to make every effort to be there in the coming years, even if they quit pretending I?m a real VIP.?

The kite programme for 2010 is now being developed and a range of international kitefliers will soon be booked to join us. Hundreds of kite fliers from the UK will also make their way to Washington to take part in the event.

The festival has been running since 1986 and at 3pm on the Sunday, the Mayor of Sunderland, will be assisted by members of the North East Kite Fliers (our local kite group) to launch The Friendship Kite that is flown each year to symbolise worldwide friendship.

There will be a varied music programme for the festival including marching brass bands and performances from City Sings.
Family Activities
Sunderland Libraries will be encouraging families to get involved in this year's summer reading challenge as well as take part in craft activities and creative workshopswork.
To get into the spirit of the World Cup there will also be a whole variety of fun and exciting World Cup themed activites to enjoy together.
With its unique blend of entertainment, there?s plenty to get the whole family involved. So come down and help to celebrate friendship around the world at the Sunderland International Friendship Festival!
How to get there?
By public transport
Buses that serve Northumbria Centre, off Stephenson Road, link to Heworth Metro, Concord and The Galleries Washington: M1, M2 and M3 operated by Go North East running Saturday and Sunday. For full timetables log onto
Travelline: 0871 200 2233
By car
Northern Area Playing Fields, Usworth, Washington is south of A194 (M) intersection with A195. See map for further information. The car park is signposted from main roads. Supervised car parking is available at Usworth School 4.50 per car. Don?t forget to set off early to avoid queues. Please note that cars left on the roadside will be ticketed by Northumbria Police.
By bike
Several bike routes lead to Washington including the C2C cycle route, which passes by the south. For more information on any of the cycling routes available please visit
Access for Disabled People
Disabled car parking is available at the Northumbria Centre with a FREE bus to the event site. Level access and disabled toilets are also available on the event site and guide dogs are welcome.
There will also be a baby changing facility available on request.
For more information contact the Sunderland Tourist Information Centre on 0191 553 2000.

Event information may be subject to change or cancellation, please check before travelling. Sunderland City Council makes every effort to maintain the accuracy of the information on this website but cannot accept responsibility for any error or alteration to details which may occur.

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