Farmers' market coming to downtown mall in February

Dave Stewart
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Christina Van Looveren, general manager of the Confederation Court Mall in Charlottetown, says the mall will be opening its Urban Farmers' Market on Feb. 13.

The Confederation Court Mall is cooking up new opportunities with local artisans and farmers as the ingredients.

The mall will launch its own Urban Farmers’ Market on Thursday, Feb. 13.

The market will be located in the food fair on the second level of the mall and will be open every Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. year-round.

It will consist of vendors who will be offering fresh, local meats and vegetables, honey, herbs, gluten-free goods, organic soaps and will also include a couple of artisans.

Each vendor will have their own green-lined canopy market stall which will give the food fair the look of an actual market concept. The stalls are also weather proof should the mall decide to take them outdoors.

“We have about 10 vendors signed up with us,’’ said Christina Van Looveren, general manager of the mall. “We’ll also have Stars for Life . . . selling items to raise money for their good cause.’’

Stars for Life is a foundation for autism that provides education, creates businesses and builds homes where aging parents will know their children will live happily and safely beyond their own lives.

“We’re aiming for a little bit more fresh and healthy market. Everything will be locally produced and the market will present all three counties of P.E.I.’’

Van Looveren says their farmers’ market is open on Thursdays and Fridays to avoid competing with the one on Belvedere Avenue that operates on Saturdays and the Queen Street version which runs each summer on Sundays.

“We also located downtown with a lot of offices around. It’s good to reach that crowd so they can shop during their lunch hours or after work. We’ll probably be adding another day in the summer when the cruise ships come in. We do a lot of traffic (in the mall) from the cruise ships.’’

Van Looveren, also a manager with mall owner Dyne Holdings, says it’s a new direction for the business.

“I know the markets are getting popular everywhere across Canada and in Europe as well. It’s a good opportunity for the local farmers to have more options to sell. It’s a good opportunity for them . . . for the businesses around to get fresh produce . . . for the mall to have a little bit more traffic. It’s beneficial for everybody.’’

Organizations: Confederation Court Mall, Dyne Holdings

Geographic location: P.E.I., Belvedere Avenue, Queen Street Canada Europe

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Recent comments

  • something more workable?
    January 27, 2014 - 13:19

    Thursday and Friday - 11:30 - 7 p.m. would be better if you must stick to the T/F schedule; else, Friday night 5-9 and Saturday 2-9 would work well also and basically not compete with the market on Belvedere Avenue.

  • Patrick Carroll
    January 27, 2014 - 10:16

    Charlottetown's existing market is most accessible to suburban residents and other coming by car. A true downtown market is still largely absent and as people are drawn back into the downtown to live, walking to get food is something you can do. I can walk to work here, I can shop as long as I do not buy big box, but for food I still must turn over the car. A step in the right direction, but with 10 vendors rather than 50, I worry the critical mass will not be there to actually buy a full "basket" of groceries. I dream of the article that announces the conversion of the Founders Hall to a real true market, with a focus on food not crafts and available more than once a week! If we can provide a impressive space, our farmers may see a living income and produce for us once again!

  • questionair
    January 26, 2014 - 20:38

    Any advice as where to park?

  • vick
    January 26, 2014 - 18:54

    Farmers market downtown awesome ideal…..howerver Folks you just dont get it you cannot have it on a Thursday and Friday not to mention during business hrs…..not going to fly….Saturday Sunday now maybe! Sorry great ideal just not the right days….no parking downtown during business hrs and more so on Thursday Fridays…..

    • Melissa
      January 27, 2014 - 11:43

      I have to agree with vick - I absolutely love the idea, but I'm a little bit skeptical about how well it will work. The timing is a little funny as well, there's pretty limited fresh produce available these days, so if people go there expecting some kind of bounty, then don't see it, will they remember to go back in the spring?