The outdoor market in Whitehorse has sprouted from its humble beginnings.
In a June 14 interview, market manager Micha St-Pierre said the Fireweed Community Market started as a “grassroots, organic and authentic way” for people to get out, share a potluck and sell their goods. She said it has grown steadily throughout the years, particularly in the most recent couple of years.
“It can be quite nostalgic to look back,” she said.
“As things grow, they require often more structure and organization.”
Officially, the market has marked 18 years, St-Pierre said. Unofficially, it is about 23 years old.
The weekly seasonal outdoor market put on by the non-profit Fireweed Community Market Society runs every Thursday between 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. from May 11 to Sept. 21 at Shipyards Park. It will feature live music by local performers until July 6 and agricultural workshops later this summer.
St-Pierre said the gathering brings together producers, buyers and sellers in one place.
In past years, around 30 to 40 vendors showed up. Lately, the number of vendors has nearly doubled.
St-Pierre said she was planning for 75 vendors on June 15.
“It’s really important for these vendors of farmers or artists or small businesses (and) people making their own foods to be able to connect directly with their customers,” St-Pierre said.
“They really are trying to source things local, so to have a place where you’re really focusing on that and supporting that, it’s wonderful, and it’s definitely a huge part of the market.”
St-Pierre said the market conducts a 5 p.m. headcount each week, clocking in the 700s. She expects a couple of thousand people, coming in and heading out from different directions, potentially venture through each market day.
“It’s a completely different experience when you’re able to talk to the artist who has made the earrings that you’re going to purchase or the souvenir that you’re bringing home from the trip,” she said.
“That’s really unique and special.”
Contact Dana Hatherly at email@example.com