A new community market is gathering vendors and getting ready to kick off its inaugural season at the Tyndall Park Community Centre.
"We just wanted to do something to contribute to and improve the vibrancy of the community," said Tyndall Community Market co-founder Lou Alarkon, who lives in the neighbouring Maples neighbourhood.
Alarkon said the market will be a place for local entrepreneurs and craftspeople to sell and show off their goods.
There’ll be food trucks, food stands, and vendors selling artisan crafts, jewelry, plants, clothing and more, Alarkon said. So far, there are about 50 vendors signed up for various dates. Spots remain throughout the season for local sellers to snap up.
"We are still looking for vendors, and they can pick and choose which dates they want to come in," Alarkon said.
The market is scheduled to open the weekend of May 7, and Alarkon hopes it will run every weekend until the season ends, except for the weekend of the Tyndall Park spring carnival.
Alarkon is co-organizing the market with her cousin Lyn Alarkon through their company Alark Co., which has previously put on GameFest at The Forks and has partnered with food trucks for an initiative to raise money for Harvest Manitoba, among other initiatives centred around local businesses.
Alarkon said the community response to the startup market has been strong.
"We’re super excited… It’s been overwhelming in terms of support. We see some of the messages and the comments on social media, and people are happy. They’re excited," she said.
Tara Garcia, co-owner of The Churro Stop, a food truck selling traditional Argentinian churros and empanadas, is one of the vendors revving up for the market season.
"These markets are so valuable because not only does it give us a place to sell our food but having a market like Tyndall brings us into a new area of the city and to a new clientele and all of that. It’s great," Garcia said.
After scraping through and adapting to the pandemic, as many local businesses have, Garcia said these markets are a welcome return to normalcy.
"Part of why the past two years had been so hard was we’re used to every weekend being with our food truck family," she said. "There’s a crew of us that are at events together every weekend, and some of us have our kids with us, and losing that really felt like a big loss… That family feeling has been really important."
Lien Pham owns Tiny Bliss Cafe and will be selling her baked goods, which she said are influenced by cuisines across the Asian continent. She’ll be there on Saturdays, she said,
"It’s good marketing for me. Considering how COVID was affecting everyone, it’s nice to get exposure," she said, adding that of course the goal is to sell as much as possible.
The market will run Saturdays 4 to 9 p.m. and Sundays 3 to 8 p.m. Vendors interested in joining the market can reach out to the Alarkons at email@example.com
Cody Sellar is the reporter/photographer for the Free Press Community Review West. He is a lifelong Winnipegger. He is a journalist, writer, sleuth, sloth, reader of books and lover of terse biographies. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 204-697-7206.