I was discussing the prep we still have to do before this first event with one of my friends earlier today when I suddenly realised I haven’t thought about food.
I heard there are places that serve food onsite but not much more than that like how prohibitive they are, if they’re all in the IC area or if there are any OOC, and how would the cost of this mark up against just bringing and cooking our own food. Along that vein too, is it even allowed to bring your own food to cook? (Specifically the cooking part)
Basically, the question’s in the title.
Some of the traders do meal tickets at a slightly reduced rate for all your meals for an event.
It’s also equally possible to mix and match between you own food and trader food. I usually bring my own cold food for breakfast, lunches and snacks and then grab a hot meal from a trader each evening as that works out cheaper than just buying trader food and saves me bringing a stove to a field.
Yes you can cook your own food, you’ll need to make sure cooking fires or things like barbecues are off the ground as those are the site rules. You can bring stuff like cool boxes and the like to the IC field as long as they’re hidden out of sight with something like a blanket over them.
But generally the food from the on-site caterers is pretty reasonable and some of them do meal tickets where you get discounts for buying a chunk of your meals at once.
Do also consider how much time you will have to prepare and cook food if that’s what you plan to do.
Especially for the evening meal you will be busy, and if trying to do group catering often busy at different times at opposite ends of the field.
Precooking something stew based, freezing it and bringing it to be reheated once it has spent a day defrosting in a cool box is a great way of doing group catering, and usually fairly OK for people to pick up at different times.
Otherwise doing your own breakfast, a pick and mix lunch of cheese, salami etc and buying dinner is quite common.
The briefcase stoves available for about £20 from most camping stores and even ASDA are pretty good, generally idiot proof and will work on any flat surface, and even if you’re drinking gallons of tea cos it’s cold you’ll probably only go through max 4 cans of fuel.
OP of that thread is my partner; we bring our toddler to events and between the three of us we go for the ‘Camping Cook’ level of self-catering for flexibility (small person wants to eat NOW and the post-battle queues at the caterers are enormous*, partner is stuck in Earl’s Council and I’m ravenous, etc.). We do have the advantage of a large tent with an awning where we can safely use a gas stove without being obtrusively OOC.
This is something to bear in mind, and a big reason having at least a few snacks about is Big and Clever - the timings of people coming off the battlefield (whether they were playing or monstering) means there’s often very long queues for the caterers early afternoon/lunchtime, as people get back to camp, out of their armour, and head straight for food. Worth bearing in mind if you need to eat regularly/promptly. On the other hand, you can often beat the queues if you can manage on a big breakfast and then tiding over with snacks until mid-afternoon.
Our group does a big catch up on the friday, we have a small bbq with bread cheese and such and then fend for ourselves afterwards. A lot of what we bring though gets kept in a IC tent and people can help them selves over the weekend.