Preparations are practically full because the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market will get set to reopen the doorways to the general public for the primary time since mid-March.
“We have been outdoors since June and we’re coming inside for the autumn and winter,” mentioned Bernie Plourde, the supervisor of the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market Co-operative
A number of the time in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic slowdown was used to do beforehand introduced renovations to improve the Belvedere Avenue constructing’s air flow, plumbing and electrical techniques.
Plourde mentioned a brand new air flow system and vent hoods for distributors who use stoves ought to enhance air high quality out there. The air flow system can even assist heat the house within the winter and funky it in the summertime.
Charlottetown Farmers’ Market Co-op supervisor Bernie Plourde says: ‘It is our first go at it this week so I am certain there will be issues that we’ll have to the touch up as we go alongside, however we’re fairly anxious and we’re prepared for Saturday the 31.’ (John Robertson/CBC)
The loos might not be absolutely prepared for the opening Saturday however Plourde mentioned porta-potties will likely be on website.
Working with Public Well being
Plourde mentioned they’ve been working with public well being officers to make sure the protection of visitors and distributors.
Plastic limitations have been put in in some stalls to battle the unfold of airborne virus particles. Masks will likely be necessary inside the constructing as properly.
As an alternative of letting individuals wander round, arrows will point out the one route by which patrons will likely be allowed to stroll
Plourde says they’re asking individuals to buy with intent in order that others ready outdoors can enter in a well timed method. (John Robertson/CBC)
Meals will be obtainable, however solely in take-out containers because the seating space will keep closed.
Plourde mentioned guests is not going to be allowed to carry their very own mugs or reusable containers for distributors to fill; distributors will likely be utilizing biodegradable containers.
“Meals will nonetheless be cooked onsite and put right into a bundle and given to you,” Plourde mentioned. “You simply will not be capable to sit contained in the market to eat.”
Glad to be again
Most of the distributors are excited to see the house reopen and welcome again acquainted faces — even when they keep behind a masks.
“Very excited. It is good being outdoors however it is going to be great to be again inside,” mentioned John MacFarlane of South Shore Seaglass and Crafts.
John MacFarlane of South Shore Seaglass and Crafts holds up an image from 1987 of himself working inside the present market location. (John Robertson/CBC)
He has labored on the Charlottetown Farmers’ Market for the reason that early Eighties — earlier than it was in its present location.
“Lots of people that come to the market each Saturday, they’re market mates,” mentioned MacFarlane. “It is good to satisfy them and I’m trying ahead to renewing the friendships.”
From shopper to vendor
For newer distributors, the transfer inside will likely be completely different from what they’ve seen to date.
“I’ve solely ever been on the surface of the market so we’re fairly excited to begin our new journey inside,” mentioned farmer Rachael Macaulay, with Crystal Inexperienced Farms.
‘Folks love to have the ability to see the farmer they usually love to have the ability to see the produce that’s popping out of the fields proper of their yard,’ says Rachael Macaulay of Crystal Inexperienced Farms. (John Robertson/CBC)
Busily getting ready the stall for Saturday. Macaulay mentioned she had beforehand made visiting a farmers’ market a part of her routine.
“I’ve all the time been going to the Summerside one, the Charlottetown one, on a regular basis, each Saturday as a buyer,” Macaulay mentioned.
“I’ve numerous completely different mates who’ve farms, who’re natural or non-organic, however it’s simply nice for all of the neighborhood to return collectively and assist our native farmers.”
Customers requested to not linger
Plourde mentioned he’s unhappy to lose among the socializing side the market is understood for, as a result of capability limits. He asks that folks come ready to buy with intent.
“Are available in, get your groceries… say a pleasant hi there, however maintain the strains transferring as a result of we could have individuals ready to enter the market,” Plourde mentioned.
“We will solely permit 100 at a time and if it will get chilly outdoors, I am unsure how many individuals will need to wait in lineup outdoors.”
The market will likely be open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. As properly, the market will proceed to function the web purchasing service so that folks can prepare for contactless pick-ups on Thursdays.