The Innisfil Farmers’ Market is back for another season of in-person shopping, with COVID-19 safety protocols in place – including a capacity limit of no more than 135 people allowed into the market at any one time.
Market Manager Jaime Grant and her team stand at the entrance, screening shoppers for COVID symptoms, ensuring that masks are worn and traffic follows the one-way arrows, and keeping track of the numbers.
“There’s a lot of COVID rules, but we’re on it!” Grant says.
With a total of 48 vendors signed up for rotation over the weeks of the market, 2021 has been even more successful than last year, setting new attendance records.
“So far, we’ve reached the 1,000 mark every day,” Grant notes. “Everyone has been so lovely.”
The Innisfil Farmers’ Market takes place in the south parking lot at the Innisfil Recreation Complex every Thursday afternoon, from 1 to 6 p.m., and at the Tanger Outlet Mall in Cookstown every Friday from 1 to 6 p.m.
On June 17, the Market celebrated Father’s Day. Not only did vendors like Bread on Wheels, The Perfect Little Bakery and The Summer Oven Bakery bring an extra supply of baked goodies, there were a number of artisans that joined the regular vendors – including Ontario craft brewers, vintners and distillers.
In addition to Pillitteri Estates Wines, shoppers could also pick up lagers, ales and stout produced by the Couchiching Craft Brewing Co., and the prize-winning vodka and gin of Heretic Spirits Alchemy Lab, located in Collingwood.
Heretic Spirits CEO Scott Morrison was on hand, sharing the history of the new distillery which was founded just 5 years ago.
It took three years to get licenced, another year to get accepted on the shelves at the LCBO, but in the short time it has been in business, Heretic Spirits products have already won 9 medals, he said.
“At the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, our gin won gold and our vodka won silver,” Morrison said, beaming with pride.
The market has plans to be open on Thursday, July 1 - Canada Day - with an array of vendors and artisans, and a special give-away. To celebrate the country's 154th birthday, the first 154 families through the gate will receive what Grant calls a "Canadian giftie."
She promises, “We are open. Bring your pets, bring your kids, bring your family – we’ll keep you safe!”