Exclusive – After more than 150 years the Cobourg Farmer’s Market will have a new home this year.
They aren’t moving far. In fact, it’s just literally a stones throw away.
The Farmer’s Market is moving to the Rotary Waterfront Park.
(in the photo vendor Bekky O’Neil from Cardboard Reality Farm and Studio, Gregory Hill from Wicklow Way Farm and President of the Cobourg Farmer’s Market, Elaina Asselin from Wicklow Way Farm)
Elaina Asselin who President of Cobourg Farmer’s Market and owner of Wicklow Way Farms with her husband Gregory Hill broke the news to Today’s Northumberland and Beyond on Saturday afternoon in downtown Cobourg.
The move takes place when the Market opens on May 5 for another season.
“Every year we seem to be getting a little tighter for space by the Market building,” said Asselin.
“We are trying to expand the market and we thought about going across the street would be perfect.”
Other than the Waterfront Festival the Rotary Waterfront Park is underused and, “it’s a park which is the perfect setting for the Farmer’s Market and we can probably double in size.”
Currently there is room enough for 30 vendors, but that’s if the vendor’s are on Second Street, along with having vendors on the south and north side of the Market building which gives an “unfair playing field.”
“This year we’ll be around the fountain so it will be an equal time with all the customers.”
The vendors will be on the grass encircling the fountain and with the paving stones the visitors can walk around.
“We’ll be facing towards the walkway so it’s easily accessible for everyone.”
Discussions about the move have been in the works for approximately two years and the President couldn’t be more thrilled that it was a unanimous vote by vendors last Wednesday.
“I had chills going down my spine because I was so happy and excited.”
“You’re going to see a lot of tents and no cars so it will be much prettier.”
The Market will be there for six months before returning to the Market Square for November and December before closing for the season.
It will be the first time the market has been moved since it began in 1839.
“The town has been extremely supportive and we appreciate the support they are giving us.”
The Farmer’s Market has been communicating with the town regularly how they are struggling to grow.
“So many people don’t even know we even exist so hopefully we are going to be more visible here then we were tucked behind Victoria Hall.”
“The more customers that come the more vendors we can get on board.”
Asselin said they are working to make the Cobourg Farmer’s Market the community hub for a Saturday morning.
“So people can come, have a bite to eat, do their shopping, see their neighbours, sit on the park bench and chat.”
“It’s a lot more attractive with the grass, the fountain and the park setting then the parking lot behind Victoria Hall.
Market Manager Tracey Gainforth is has been organising free workshops that will be scheduled till the end of July including yoga, yoga with kids, meditation, essential oils among many others.
Another bonus is having electrical outlets around the fountain.
On opening day, there will be upwards of 40 vendors at Rotary Waterfront Park with not only fresh produce but also there will be more diverse products.
“Vendors want to be here because it is a fun place to be,” said Asselin.
And the bonus, “there is a lot more room to grow.”