St. Albert’s 28th summer farmers’ market opens this Saturday and the chamber of commerce is excited about some new vendors who will be making their debut.
One of those vendors is Smoky Valley Goat Cheese, a brand new operation based near Smoky Lake. Co-owner Holly Gale is excited about showcasing her cheeses in St. Albert.
“We’re hoping that people enjoy [cheese products] made fresh on the farm,” she said. “We have our own milk from our own goats.”
Another new business that will be at the market is Vegaholics, an Edmonton-based producer of vegan heat-and-serve meals.
“I think it’ll be really big because there is just nothing like this,” said owner Jayne Murray, who started the business in the new year after adopting a vegan lifestyle and finding few meal options.
BabyLove Organic Foods of Spruce Grove will also be unveiling its product line at the market. The company makes its own frozen organic baby food.
“I hope it goes over well because I think there’s a huge need,” said owner Mandy Olsgard-Dumanski, who buys many of her ingredients at the St. Albert market.
“I just thought it was a really good venue for my products,” she said. “I see a lot of young families there so I’m pretty optimistic.”
The chamber has increased the number of regular booths in an attempt to create more continuity from week to week, said the organizer James McCurdy.
“There’s a lot of customers who come and they buy the same products on a weekly basis and they come there looking for that product so this just allows there to be consistency,” he said.
Billed as the largest outdoor farmers’ market in Western Canada, this year’s version will have about 150 seasonal vendors, who attend every week, McCurdy said. There will be about 80 other vendors who attend less regularly.
Free parking with a shuttle service will be available from St. Albert Centre again this year, said chamber CEO Lynda Moffat.
The market starts later than others in the region because of the International Children’s Festival, Moffat said.
The market will remain open two weeks longer this year, until Oct. 9, which puts it on par with others in the region, McCurdy said.
The chamber is encouraging other Perron District businesses to hold events like sidewalk sales so they can attract some of the foot traffic that the market draws to the area, he said.