Community

Winter farmers’ market seeking new home

The White Rock winter farmers’ market is searching for a new home.

The post-summer market has simply grown too big for its current home at the Kent Street Activity Centre, manager Helen Fathers says.

The first of two winter markets held on Sunday, Nov.4, packed the interior of the 2,400-square-foot community centre at 1475 Kent St. and overflowed outside into the parking lot where about a dozen vendors were selling from shelter canopies.

“We seem to have outgrown it (the centre),” market manager Helen Fathers told Peace Arch News last week.

“Because we’ve been so successful in the summer months, a lot of vendors turned out for the winter market.”

Fathers said the only White Rock location big enough to accommodate an expanded winter market is the Star of the Sea hall at 15262 Pacific Ave., and that is usually booked on Sundays.

“Maybe we can move to a Saturday,” Fathers said, adding no final decision has been made about a relocation or schedule change.

The manager of the flea market at the Star of the Sea doesn’t see a conflict with his event but warns there could still be problems accommodating the farmers’ market. For the past 25 years, the Star of the Sea hall has hosted a flea market administered by the Knights of Columbus charity on the first Saturday of the month from September through December.

Flea market manager Phil Limbert said one potential problem with staging a Sunday winter market at the Star of the Sea hall is the morning church service at the same location.

Limbert added the Star of the Sea hall is only slightly bigger than the Kent Street facility at approximately 3,000 sq. ft, but it does have more parking space available.

“The problem they’ve (the farmers winter market has) got is they’re using the parking lot,” Limbert said.

Limbert said as far as he knows, no one from the farmers’ market has approached the hall about using it in November and December.

“It’s the first I’ve heard of it,” Limbert said when Peace Arch News contacted him on Wednesday last week.

This year, the White Rock Farmers’ market market had its busiest summer yet, according to its website, which reports 77 vendors attended the final event of the season at its Russell Avenue location on Oct. 7.

The 13-year-old non-profit market offers a weekly space to sellers of fresh fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on locally-grown farm produce.

There are also baked goods, preserves, garden products and specialty food items crafts produced by local artisans

It operates 20 weeks out of the year from the last Sunday in May until Thanksgiving Sunday, followed by the two winter markets in November and December.

The next winter market will take place at the Kent Street Activity Centre on Sunday Dec 2, 2012 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

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