Last Wednesday March 20th was the Vernal Equinox, and I think it’s safe to say that most of us are happy to see spring arrive! The days are getting longer, and we don’t need to bundle up so much before heading outside.
Spring is an exciting time of year for those of us involved in the market. As you may know, the Campbellford Farmers’ Market is run entirely by vendor volunteers. At the beginning of March, we hold our Annual General Meeting where we elect the Market Executive, which is the governing body of our market. For the 2019 season we welcome back Jenny Madden as Chair, Andrew Vokes as Treasurer, Amanda Vaughan as Secretary, and Hope Herfst as a Director at Large. New for this year, we’re happy to be joined by Melissa Smeets as Marketing Director. This team is excited to bring the best farm, food, and artisan vendors in the area to the market!
Our farms, gardens, and kitchens are gearing up for our opening market days – Wednesday May 1st and Saturday May 4rd. We’ll be joined this year by several exciting new vendors, who we’ll tell you about as the beginning of the season nears. In the meantime, we’ve got updates from some of our returning vendors.
Healey Falls Bison Farms has good news to share. They have been accepted into the Chicken Farmers of Ontario’s “Artisan Chicken Program” which means they’ll be able to sell chicken at the market this year! Wendelin tells us that she and Allan are planning to raise almost 700 chickens. The first batch of birds will be ready for sale by the end of May or early June. They plan to offer whole chickens, chicken parts, and ground chicken. With bison, dog treats, and hot coffee for sale too, Healey Falls Bison Farms continues to be a vendor you can’t afford to miss!
The Melly Rolls kitchen is always a beehive of activity! Melissa has kept busy this winter with catering, pop-up markets, and recipe development. Butter tarts are now on Melissa’s menu (yippee!), she’s experimenting with Aussie meat pies, and her new candied ginger snacks are delicious!
Wayne Howson of Howson’s Pure Maple Syrup and Honey reports that the maple syrup has started to run, but cold temperatures have meant that the season is starting slowly. No matter, Howson’s Maple Syrup is well worth the wait!!
And at Undercover Farm the 2019 growing season has begun! Nadia grows her seedlings indoors, usually until April, when her unheated greenhouse is warm enough to protect them. I can’t wait to bite into one of her juicy tomatoes!
At Vokes Farms, Andrew has built some new shelves for under his grow lights. He’s got peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, kale, swiss chard, ground cherries, and tomatillos on the go. He’ll be starting some of his yummy ferments for market next week.
And finally, lots of excitement at Braelea Acres! The Herfsts have been busy lambing. They have close to 40 lambs at the farm these days. A ewe named Buddy, gave birth to quadruplets on Monday – four healthy boys!
Thanks for reading and don’t forget to mark May 1st and May 4th on your calendars!