The Barriere Farmers Market has seen a burst in growth this year, despite COVID-19 and the summer wildfires.
Jayne D’Entremont, the market’s acting president and manager, said 18 vendors participate in the market this year, up from the eight who usually show. She said a lot of travellers also dropped into the market, as well as an increased number of locals.
“They couldn’t really go anywhere else so it was an opportunity to come out, say hi and chat with everybody, so that was just wonderful to see,” D’Entremont said. “Last year and this year was incredibly successful when I was really doubting that they would be, just because of all the trials and negativity happening.”
On average, they had about 14 vendors each market day – some old and some new. Some of the most interesting vendors they saw this year included honey producers and a clockmaker. Some vendors also came down from 100 Mile House and Deka Lake, which she welcomed as the more tents they set up, the more customers they attract.
Even on smoky days, she said, the enthusiasm for the market wasn’t dampened, though she did have to close the market once due to high 40C temperatures. Many of the market’s patrons and vendors are seniors so she didn’t want to put them at risk.
“Other than that, we’re pretty much there rain or shine,” D’Entremont said, noting the market runs from the first Thursday in May to the last Thursday in October. “Then we move into our indoor market.”
The Barriere Farmers Market will be outside beside Sam’s Pizza for another six more weeks, running from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Thursday. On Oct. 16, it will move into its winter location at the Barriere Seniors Centre and be open every second Saturday until the end of March.
D’Entremont encourages people to check out the outdoor market. Fall vegetables like pumpkins and other gourds are beginning to be sold as well as canned goods. If anyone wishes to become a vendor, contact her via the market’s Facebook page at Barriere Farmers’ Market.