The taste of honey still warm from the hive, the happy racket of a friendly crowd and the tangy scent of fresh sourdough joyfully bombard the senses at one of the Kootenay Farmers’ Markets.
A throwback to an era when food didn’t come in plastic packaging, these markets are popping up all over the Kootenays. From Kaslo to Cranbrook and Elkford to Revelstoke, there are over 20 Kootenay Farmers’ Markets operating throughout the summer. Find our which Kootenay community is offering markets this summer (2020).
When I head to the Cranbrook Farmers’ Market every Saturday morning I’m guaranteed to run into old friends (like Sharon from Fort Steele Farms) and know my kids will find their buddies and ditch me for the monkey bars.
With the kids safely running in their ‘herd’ I slowly browse everything the market has to offer. With everything from multi-hued purple and orange carrots to delicately feathered fish-fly earrings, the market is a sensuous experience best explored at a snail’s pace.
The BC Association of Farmers’ Markets supports vendors who sell products they “make, bake, grow or raise themselves” creating vibrant markets filled with more than just fruit and veggies.
Micah Wassink, a popular vendor at the Creston, Kimberley and Cranbrook markets, sells pottery thrown by her husband Jeremiah and painted by herself at Pridham Studio, the Creston business they recently purchased from her parents.
“Farmers’ Markets are a big part of our world”, says Wassink. “We get to share our work with customers we wouldn’t meet in the studio”.
Registered Nutritionist Roxanne Ferrier who works in Nutter’s in Cranbrook says, “Farmers’ Markets are good for the mind, body and soul; the bright colours and freshness of the produce encourages shoppers to try new foods they may not otherwise consider. And they get a healthy boost of exercise, bone building vitamin D, and spirit boosting social interaction”.
If you’re focused on putting fresh, healthy food on your table and want to support local craftsmen, merchants and growers, Farmers’ Markets are a great place to explore.
Learn more about BC’s Farmers’ Markets Market Trail – a definitive guide to 145+ authentic farmers’ markets across BC. Highlighting farmers’ markets in the Cariboo Chilcontin Coast, the Kootenay Rockies, Northern BC, the Sunshine Coast and Vancouver Island & the Gulf Islands.
~ Take extra time to research and plan your trip in advance. Many of our tourism businesses and services have adopted new COVID-19 protocols and changes to their schedules or policies to ensure your safety. You’ll want to become familiar with them ahead of time.
~ If you normally travel with extended family or with several friends, consider travelling in a smaller group. Travelling with fewer people makes it easier for you to practise physical distancing in public, and may have less of an impact on the destination.
~ Consider a slower travel pace to help curb the spread. Instead of checking in and out of multiple destinations during one trip, choose one or two destinations and one/two accommodation properties for your entire trip (and explore all the things to do & see nearby).
~ A Kootenay Coffee Road Trip: Meet the Locals
~ Creston Cru: Get a Taste of these Vineyards
~ Kootenay Made
~ Kootenay Rockies: Farm to Fork
~ Our Kootenay Spirits
~ Savouring the Kootenay Rockies this Summer/Fall
~ Wet Your Whistle: Along a Kootenay Road Trip
Words by Julie Brannigan. Top/cover photo by Kari Medig.
Julie’s daughters would love to throw her Canon in the river! If she isn’t taking photos for local businesses in the Cranbrook area, she’s busy at her full time job as a legal assistant. Julie spends her downtime rafting the St. Mary’s River, playing hockey and enjoying her multi-generational family.
(Original story published in June 2018.)