This spring will welcome a farmers’ market to the streets of Merrickville, spearheaded by the community group Merrickville Goes Green.
The market is set to open at the beginning of June and will be a producer’s market, offering fresh produce, meat, honey, baked goods and more. The market will run mid-week, on Wednesdays from 3-7 pm, to fill the gap between the weekend markets of Kemptville, Brockville and North Gower. “In my opinion, local markets need to be supported by the community,” says Scott Kelland, one of the main organizers of the market and a member of Merrickville Goes Green. “You have to make it convenient for local residents.”
Having the market mid-week also allows producers who are busy on the weekend another opportunity to sell their goods. Although the location of the market has not been nailed down, Scott says there are a couple great possibilities right on, or close to, Saint Lawrence Street. “We have had two local businesses offer space next to their stores.”
Merrickville Goes Green has been a community organization focused on sustainability and green living since 2008. For the past eight years, they have organized the eco-fair that has drawn over 40 vendors and exhibitors each year. The farmers’ market is an effort by Merrickville Goes Green to ride on the coattails of the fair, and give the community something focused on local sustainable living on a more regular basis. “We want to keep the energy and the excitement of the Eco Fair going a little bit,” Scott says.
Merrickville-Wolford council has expressed their support for the project, as it is part of their strategic plan to start a farmers’ market in Merrickville. “I am very supportive of it, and appreciate the work being done by Merrickville Goes Green,” says Mayor David Nash.
Scott hopes that the farmers’ market will give small producers, or people just starting up, a venue to sell their goods. “We’re trying to grow growers.” Scott says. “I see setting up the farmers’ market as an opportunity for local people who are unemployed or under employed to start a business of their own.”
There are already 12 vendors signed up for the farmers’ market, but they are looking for others to fill the space, which will hold 16. Scott says they will also be holding one spot for a local organization or charity to use free of charge. Anyone who is interested in either a by-weekly or seasonal spot at the market is encouraged to email Scott at [email protected].