PHOTOS: White Rock Farmers’ Market ‘welcomes all vendors’

White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)
White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)
White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)
White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)
White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)
White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)White Rock Farmers’ market took extra precautions as it re-opened during the second phase of B.C.’s COVID-19 reopening plan. (Aaron Hinks photo)

After launching the White Rock Farmers’ Market 2020 season last month as “essentially an outdoor grocery market,” officials say there will be a bit of sparkle returning to the weekly affair starting this Sunday, as pandemic-related limitations around who can sell relax.

READ MORE: White Rock Farmers’ Market back with a difference May 3

Market manager Helen Fathers – who is also a City of White Rock councillor – said Friday (June 5) that for the first time since the May 3 opening, the market – operating in the uptown centre – will boast its full spectrum of vendors, not just those that are food-only.

“This week will be the first week of going back to all of the vendors, so we are excited, obviously, to welcome back all those vendors that haven’t been allowed to sell,” Fathers said.

“They call me every week, ‘Can we come back this week?’” she added, referring to jewelry vendors and other artisans who have historically booked stalls at the market.

Up until this week, Fathers has had to answer no, but now, she can say, “‘You can.’

“It’s great.”

Fathers doesn’t expect, however, that music will be returning to the market this season. Not having that element, she said, has been “so hard… a bit of a blow for us.”

Open from 10 a.m. till 2 p.m. on Sundays through Oct. 25, market visitors are asked to ‘shop – don’t stop,’ as part of measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Fathers said those who have been coming out – attendance, at around 1,500 per week, is about half of what it’s been in previous seasons, she said – are largely mindful of the requests to not simply meander through.

“What we’ve found is the people that come to the market, they’re coming… to buy what they want to buy and then they’re leaving,” she said. “It’s actually been really positive for the vendors, because the vendors, they’re selling out. Everyone that is coming, is buying.”

A significant challenge of the pandemic has been the financial impact felt by the restriction on vendors.

“The biggest thing is… if you don’t have the vendors paying the fees, then you don’t have, obviously, you don’t have the revenue,” Fathers said. “We’re not losing money, but we’re being very, very cautious.

“Like most businesses, you can’t continue like this for a large length of time, you have to make drastic cuts.

“We’re only surviving because we’ve been able to claim the wage subsidy,” she added, referring to the federal government program that provides businesses with 75 per cent of each employee’s salary, up to $847 each week.

READ MORE: Businesses can apply for wage subsidy April 27, calculate payments on new website

Fathers was hopeful an announcement expected from the ministry of agriculture Friday afternoon (June 5) would include some funding allocation for markets.

Another change visitors to the White Rock market may notice this week is a reconfiguration of its layout, due to Bosa beginning construction on the next phase of the Miramar Plaza.

“So the fence line has been changed on us, so we’ve had to kind of move around that a little bit,” Fathers explained. “The market looks a little bit different to what it has done in the past because we don’t have that bottom south-end area, so we just kind of wrapped it around the community centre.

“We’ve taken more room on Russell Avenue heading west as well.”

Depending on the turnout, visitors may have a short wait in line to enter. Fathers said there are two entrance points, hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer – all part of efforts to keep the market operating safely.

“All of our staff, we haven’t had any training in this,” Fathers noted, of running a business during a pandemic.

“We’re only using common sense and doing the best we can.”



tholmes@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CoronavirusWhite Rock

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

President of the West Coast Fine Arts Show, Brian Croft, said pandemic restrictions necessitated a shift to an entirely online event this year, running until April 30. (File photo)
The West Fine Art Show shifts to an online-only event amid tighter health orders

Website version retains the flavour of the annual live exhibition

A vaccine-filled needle awaits injection, during a COVID-19 vaccination clinic held Jan. 15, 2021 at Amica White Rock. Community Living B.C.-funded workers learned April 8 that they, too, can now be vaccinated. (Tracy Holmes file photo)
Support workers for those with disabilities given vaccine priority

News shared with Community Living B.C.-funded staff on April 8

British Columbia Attorney General David Eby. (Photo: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Attorney General covers housing, homelessness and justice reform in Surrey Zoom

‘I think it would be really great to hold some sessions in Surrey,’ Eby says of legislative assembly

Scott Wheatley stands with the main Kenyan and Ugandan umpiring crew that he trained at the Nakirebe Complex outside of Kampala in 2020. Wheatley, a member-at-large with Softball B.C. is supporting a recent open letter from the sporting body that calls on the government to reinstate gameplay for kids in organized sports. (Photo: Submitted)
Softball B.C. urges provincial health officer to lift ban on gameplay for kids in organized sports

Sporting body sent open letter to both Bonnie Henry and Adrian Dix

Surrey RCMP are looking for these two men after a bank in the 12800-block of 96th Avenue was robbed on March 12. (Images: Surrey RCMP)
Police release images of two men suspected of robbing Surrey bank

Robbery happened on March 12 at bank in 12800-block of 96th Avenue

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed on April 4, according to a statement from police. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police name victim following city’s fourth homicide of 2021

Robinson Russ, 37, was fatally stabbed Sunday in the Downtown Eastside

Sunset Manor, an assisted living facility in Chilliwack owned by the Netherlands Reformed Congregation of Chilliwack, pictured here in October 2020, had its third COVID-19 outbreak declared on April 9, 2021. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress file)
3rd COVID outbreak at care home run by Chilliwack church known for opposing vaccinations

30-bed Sunset Manor owned and operated by Netherlands Reformed Congregation of Chilliwack

A man wears a face mask past the emergency department of the Vancouver General Hospital. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Calls for stricter action in B.C. as COVID-19 variants projected to climb

Jens von Bergmann says the province has taken a ‘wait and see’ approach when early action is needed

Vancouver’s park board general manager issued a new order Friday restricting tents and other temporary structures from being set up in Strathcona Park after April 30, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver park board issues order to restrict tents in Strathcona Park

The order issued Friday restricted tents and other temporary structures from being set up after April 30

Vancouver Canucks general manager Jim Benning says the players who’ve tested positive for COVID-19 are recovering and the team still intends to play a 56-game season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Canucks players ‘mostly on the other side’ of COVID outbreak: general manager

The athletes have had a “whole range” of COVID-19 symptoms, said team physician Dr. Jim Bovard, but no one has needed to be hospitalized

Police are investigating after a man was shot Thursday, April 8 while sitting in a car in Vancouver. (Black Press files)
Man shot in Vancouver while sitting in a parked car: police

The victim is currently in critical condition. Police say no arrests have been made.

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP is seeking public tips regarding a break-in that left multiple people injured in Vernon Saturday, March 6, 2021. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Cariboo teacher charged in child exploitation case

Charge laid against teacher at Peter Skene Ogden

Most Read