The days are getting shorter and the weather is getting colder, but don’t put away your reusable shopping bags and baskets just yet.
The Penticton Farmers’ Market is staying open longer and is moving indoors where it will be much warmer. The annual Winter Markets offer customers a variety of farm fresh produce right up until the holidays.
Nearly 30 vendors will gather at the Shatford Centre (760 Main St.) Dec. 5 and 19. The Winter Markets will be open from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.
“This is our fourth consecutive year of hosting the Winter Markets, and every year they’re growing in popularity,” said market manager Erin Trainer. “We don’t want our customers to change their weekly shopping habits, and many vendors still have things to sell, including locally grown winter veggies, eggs and bread. We’ve also got a selection of local crafters and liquor vendors.”
Compared with the outdoor markets, people can expect a more cozy and laid-back shopping experience, complete with familiar vendors, live music, and seasonal aromas and flavours.
Now that the market has transitioned inside, the Penticton Farmers’ Market Society would like acknowledge its vendors and customers, as well as several organizations for their roles in making the outdoor market a success: the City of Penticton, the Downtown Penticton Association, Main Street businesses, and the local media.
“Thanks to the early spring weather, May was our busiest start ever. We were seeing July numbers right from the beginning,” said Trainer. “I’m always amazed when I look down Main Street and see a sea of shoppers picking up locally grown and made products, and interacting with the farmers and crafters. The market has become the place to be on Saturday where people feel a sense of community.”
For the third year in a row, the market also continued its partnership with the Penticton Boys and Girls Club and the Salvation Army to offer the Nutrition Coupon Program. The program is sponsored by the B.C. Association of Farmers’ Markets and the B.C. government, and provides low-income families and seniors with coupons to spend at the market. Over the course of the 2015 season, program participants spent $11,500 in coupons.
The Penticton Farmers’ Market is run by a non-profit society whose mandate is to provide an opportunity for local agricultural producers and craftspeople to sell their products directly to the public.