Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 29/8/2012 (1700 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The Main Street Farmers’ Market moved from Redwood Avenue to Euclid Avenue earlier this year, with the intent of creating synergy with Neechi Commons Market. When Neechi’s opening was delayed, the farmers’ market seemed to suffer rather than thrive in its new location with fewer vendors, little produce, and a lack of customers.
In the last few weeks, however, the market has experienced a rebirth. Fun, catchy music and enthusiastic sign-holders with slogans like "Drop the Beet" and "Have a Grape Day" get peoples’ attention. In response, some drivers honk as they go by; others turn into the parking lot to check things out.
A big game-changer has been the participation of Music First, a music production business run by Point Douglas residents, Tyson Cormack and Khalin McGiffin. Their music changes the energy and feel of the market and puts people in a good mood.
Another change has been Iain Brynjolson bringing in the Food For Folks market into the North End. Brynjolson, 23, a life-long resident of the North End, has been selling fresh produce at the Winnipeg Folk Festival for the past three years. He was convinced, in part, by North End Food Security Network co-ordinator, Jasmine Tara, to take the time out of his busy schedule and provide what was missing — a variety of fresh local produce.
The produce is sourced from Jonathan’s Farm, located 10 miles west of Winnipeg Beach, and the Food Ethos Farm near Teulon. Cool drinks are also available: iced coffee roasted by Black Pearl and ordered from Jonnies Sticky Buns, and Yerba Mate iced tea drinks from Organic Planet Co-op.
Food For Folks is a volunteer-run, not-for-profit venture. All money raised through re-selling local products and produce goes towards starting an urban farm in the North End next spring, with the hopes of supplying local markets and restaurants and enabling access to fresh produce in the inner city.
What else will you find at the Main Street Farmers’ Market? A variety of products are available for purchase: hand-made soaps, artisan breads and fresh herbs, honey (buckwheat, alfalfa, dandelion), beaded jewelry, homespun blankets, and hand-carved woodworking.
New vendors are being added weekly. Some, like Brittany Bauer of Artemisia Herbal and Paul Kruse of Bjorn Bread and Garden, make it a family affair with babies and spouses all participating together, sharing skill and passion with the community. Other vendors enjoy their hobbies, meeting people, and getting out. Yet others, like Giguere Honey Farm, create their livelihood by direct-selling their products at farmers’ markets.
If you have an abundance of produce in your garden, or other wares to share, you can still apply to be a vendor. Contact Jasmine or Melissa at 927-2342 for an application. There is no charge to participate.
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The next Meet Me at the Bell Tower gathering will take place Thu., Sept. 6 at 6 p.m. on Selkirk Avenue near Powers Street.
Sonya Braun is a community correspondent for the North End. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.