The annual White Rock Summer Farmers’ Market will be drawing to a close on Sunday – just in time to pick up last-minute produce for Thanksgiving dinner.
The market, which is held at Miramar Village, features an average of 60 vendors who supply everything from peaches and leafy greens to Korean pottery and dog treats. And despite the rain-soaked summer this year, the market fared well, according to Helen Fathers, the market manager.
“Considering the weather, we had a good turnout,” said Fathers, who has been involved with the market for more than seven years. “Some of the vegetables and fruit were behind because of the weather, but on average we had market full of vendors.”
The rain didn’t dampen the enthusiasm for customers either. According to Fathers, more than 2,500 people came to the market on average, and with Thanksgiving approaching on Monday she expects a full crowd to close out the summer season.
“It will be fast and furious because we don’t have another market for a month,” said Fathers. “But people will get what they need to get.”
For Fathers, having interaction between the vendors and the customers is more than just supply and demand. Almost all the vendors are local which provides customers with a farm-to-table experience.
“It’s a great relationship to have with a farmer because they work so hard for us. It really builds a sense of community and that’s what we need – we need community,” said Fathers. “We have people who come here just to chat with people and have coffee.”
The White Rock market was chosen this year to be a part of the Metro Vancouver Food System Strategy which focuses on creating a food system that is local and sustainable.
Participants will review the current food system set in place in Metro Vancouver and its challenges and work towards improving on them.
“Having our market invited to help shape new policy in the region – that was big,” said Fathers.
According to a study from the University of Northern B.C., the farmers market injected nearly $1-million into the local economy in 2006.
The market was founded in 1999 and is operated by the White Rock Farmers’ Market Association.
Vendors will open up and start selling from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. beneath the towers near Russell Avenue and Johnston Road.
The winter season farmers’ markets will take place on Nov. 7 and Dec. 5 at the Kent Street Activity Center.
For a list of vendors go to http://www.whiterockfarmersmarket.ca