Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Are you stopping by the market for opening day?

We are putting on the final touches; anticipation is in the air. Opening day for the 2010 season is
SATURDAY, MAY 8th, 8am - 12noon

(not the first Saturday in May which happens to be May 1st - I am gently reminding here as I have had several people asking if it is the first Saturday in May).
To kick off the season and to connect with the community again, the Market Promotions Committee has planned a Pancake Breakfast, complete with turkey breakfast sausage from Oegama's Turkey Shoppe; chef skills to be offered by some of the Mayoral Candidates of St. Thomas. Bring the family and come on an empty stomach! All proceeds from this breakfast go to the promotions of our market.

The breakfast sandwich will resume it's regularly scheduled breakfast combo deal starting the second week back - the folks at Farmgate Markets (along with the rest of us) want to see how fast the 'chefs' can flip.

It is Mother's Day Weekend and many of the vendors are including specials or promotions for the women in your lives (my Aunt, Amazing Mom, and the Market Volunteer Photographer in the far left of the photo).

Our new, full service coffee vendor is brewing a special blend of fair-trade coffee that is fairly purchased from a group of women coffee growers of the global south. As part of that full service, Jay Wiebe from The Part-Time Peasant is an associate brewer of Fire Roasted Coffee from London, ON. He is very keen and excited to be starting at the market this year and is offering various brews as well as beans to purchase. He is also offering two different size coffee cups on market day - large and larger! And a special vendor discount so be sure to remind him if you are a vendor!
Another new vendor this year is Cindy Birchman; her business is called Succulent Wonders. Here is a guest post with a few details about Cindy's business in her own words:

"This season I will be providing a variety of succulents and other drought-tolerant plants in decorative manners, focusing on growing plants vertically. I create one-of-a-kind living wreaths, living pictures, hanging terrariums, light bulb terrariums, dish gardens and potted collections. I will be taking custom orders on market days also.

Succulent plants, also known as succulents or fat plants, are water-retaining plants adapted to arid climates and soil conditions. Succulent plants store water in their leaves, stems and/or roots. The storage of water often gives succulent plants a more swollen or fleshy appearance than other plants, also known as succulence. Many succulents come from the dry areas of the tropics and subtropics, such as steppes, semi-desert and desert. High temperatures and low precipitation force plants to collect and store water in order to survive long dry periods. Because of this feature, succulents are generally low maintenance plants.

Succulents thrive on neglect. They grow best in bright, indirect light and should only be watered when the soil is completely dry. Because succulents are adapted to dry conditions, do not over-water or allow their "feet to be wet". Other than that, succulents are easy to care for and will amaze you with their variety of shapes, textures and colours. Stars, sticks, rosettes, fuzzy, smooth, bumpy, red, purple, yellow, chartreuse, lavender, short, tall, cascading or shrub-like; there is a plant for every taste!"

Amber DeJong and the team from Frisa Farms are back, thankfully, with their cartons and cartons of eggs. You can read a bit more on the egg farmers' struggle and the challenges of getting those eggs to market.

I have been establishing a few guidelines for this newsletter based on the comments from last season and the continued growth of the market. The purpose of this newsletter (which a direct post from the blog), is to gently remind you all about the market on Saturday and to keep you informed of what is coming up, including what is in season. It was not intended as a form of advertising for the vendors, however, we all want to know a bit about our vendors. There in lies the challenge, as last season we had over 60 vendors during the course of the season.

I have offered each vendor one guest spot in the newsletter. Given the number of vendors we have, and how many of them take me up on this offer, you may see two or three vendor spotlight in each newsletter.

There are many details I have not yet included, like the gift the Promotions Committee is handing out for the first 100 Moms, or that the Retreads will be playing their tunes on opening day, but for the sake of brevity, I will post more in the next mailing.

Wishing you well and looking forward to seeing you at the market!

Tricia Herbert
Market Manager

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