Main Farmer’s Market Celebrates 10 years

By Christine MacIntyre

As changes continue to take place in Old Ottawa East, it is nice that some things continue year after year. One constant for our community is the Main Street Farmers’ Market, which will be celebrating its 10th full year in operation when it reopens this season. The Market will be returning to the same location as last year, in the parking lot located nearby the Green Door restaurant, from the first Saturday in June until the last Saturday in October. The Market’s hours will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., which is an hour longer than in past years.

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

This local farmers’ market, which started out with a short, but successful, three-week trial period in 2007, returned the following year for the entire 2008 season. Notwithstanding a short stint at the Canadian Museum of Nature, while major roadworks were taking place on Main Street, the Market quickly became a place for those in Old Ottawa East to more easily access fresh produce, meat and a variety of other products, directly from vendors located within 160 km of the Market.

The Market began as a grassroots initiative of Sustainable Living of Old Ottawa East (SLOE) and today is run by a small, but dedicated volunteer board of directors who are keen to ensure that our residents and visitors to the community have access to local products in the heart of Old Ottawa East. According to Sue Cavanaugh, the board’s president, the Market has many benefits for the community. “The Market continues to be an important gathering point for many in the community. There is a chance to get to know the vendors, to learn about their diverse local products, to include these products in their lives, in addition to simply being a wonderful place to chat with neighbours we know and to get to know others in the community,” says Cavanaugh.

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

Vendors are also excited about returning to the Old Ottawa East Farmers’ Market again this year. One returning vendor remarked, “the Main St. Farmers’ Market provides our small business with a great opportunity to bring our products directly to those in the neighbourhood. Almost all of those who enjoy our products also share our desire to provide healthy, local options.”

When asked about the Market’s plans for the 2018 season, Dave Coyne, Market Manager, explained “the Market is opening a month later than in past years to provide a bit more time for some of the local crops to arrive. In addition, as in past years, we will have face painting, small concerts with local musicians and food demonstrations, from time to time.” Coyne continued “we also have a community tent and occasionally groups are invited to share information of interest with those who join us at the market”.

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

Photo: Main Farmer Market Facebook

The Market has had its own website, mainfarmersmarket.org, as well as a social media presence for several years. Those interested in learning about special events or activities that may be taking place at the Market over the course of the season should consult the website, or the Market’s Twitter (@mainfarmmarkott), Facebook (mainfarmmarket613/) and Instagram (mainmarketottawa/) accounts.

Access to a genuine local farmers’ market is just one of the many great reasons to live in Old Ottawa East and the vendors and Market Board members are eager to welcome all from the community when the Farmers’ Market opens for operations again on June 2, 2018.

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Filed in: Business Beat, News

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