Get ready to mark the arrival of autumn and enjoy the feel of fall with Fermanagh Farms.
The event venue is hosting their second-annual Fall Market on Sunday, Oct. 1 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with artisans, food vendors, a kids’ zone with a bouncy castle, a photo area, pick your own pumpkins and music by DJ Mastermix — all hosted in a rustic barn from 1893 and on the farm property at 4023 Line 3, in Bradford.
Jana Shingler, the market co-ordinator at Fermanagh Farms, expects more than 40 vendors will be present offering:
- food and treats
- crafts, garden and pet items
- jewellery, clothing and accessories
- body care, teas and wellness items
The market signals the approaching end of the wedding season at the farm, according to Shingler, and gives everyone a bit of a break and a chance to enjoy something different.
“It’s honestly a labour of love holding this market. It’s really nice to get the community together, and it’s really nice to support some small local businesses,” she said.
While the first Fall Market last year was a success, Shingler said it was also bit of a learning experience, and they took the feedback from that to offer even more this year, including the kids’ zone and bouncy castle.
“Bring your pets. Bring your kids. Bring your loved ones. There’s a place to sit, there’s a place to go for a walk and there’s a place to eat,” she said.
The event is pet friendly, so long as guests pick up after their pets, and there are picnic tables spread around the property for anyone who can’t wait to get home to enjoy some of tasty treats on offer.
Shingler said some of her favourites include the butter tarts and kettle corn, but anyone looking for a bite, can also expect spanakopita, samosas, pumpkin pie, cotton candy and even freeze dried treats.
“We don’t even mind if people want to pull up a picnic blanket and sit down,” she said.
The market also offers the opportunity to stock up on food and decor ahead of the Thanksgiving weekend, including centre pieces for the table.
Shingler estimates more than 1,000 people came through the Spring Market over two days and anticipates more than 500 for the Fall Market, so they’ve ensured there’s plenty of parking and plan to direct traffic as well.
There is no set cost for admission, but attendees are asked to bring donations of money or non-perishable food items for the Bradford Helping Hand Food Bank.
During the Spring Market, the farm raised almost $650 and collected 500 kilograms of food — a record Shingler hopes they’ll break.
“Our goal is always to do the best that we possibly can in terms of fundraising for the food bank. The food bank is our chosen charity for this event, because it is around thanksgiving and there is a lot of food insecurity leading up to this season. It’s been an unusual few years with inflation going up,” she said.
Even for those who may not be interested in the market, Shingler encourages them to come and enjoy the natural colours usually on display that time of year.
“The leaves are changing at that time and it’s so beautiful just to walk around the property. We let everyone go for a walk, hike, do whatever you want to do,” she said.
There may also be wagon rides around the property, weather permitting.
The event is scheduled to go ahead rain or shine, with both the barn and a tented area providing a space to keep dry, but dress appropriately.
The pumpkins can be booked on Eventbrite, but Shingler expects they’ll have more than enough for everyone.
She warned that some GPS systems have trouble finding the farm, but for more information, including maps and directions to the farm, visit fermanaghfarms.com/vendormarkets/.