A new indoor market has made it’s home at the Mount 7 Spirits Craft Distillery, which opened it’s doors to vendors just two weeks ago.
The market, which runs weekly on Saturdays, has attracted locals and tourists alike and has been well received by the community, as well as its vendors.
“We’re all local and we’re all going through the same restart plan and struggling with COVID, hopefully this helps people,” said Greg Ehman, who has helped organize the markets.
“We’re all in this together and just to be able to support the community that has supported us over the years is a great way to give back.”
The idea first came around just over a month ago, when COVID restrictions at the recently re-opened farmers market prevented certain local vendors from securing space at Spirit Square.
Ehman workshopped with a few vendors to come up with some ideas for the market and to feel out what the needs of the vendors were, before opening up the discussion to the community in general about a month ago in a Facebook post.
The majority of vendors are artisans and jewellers, according to Ehman, as they were facing the most challenges securing space in the farmer’s market. However, moving forward, he says they’re looking to diversify the products they offer, having reached out to a few farmers and bringing in Darrell Beam, a local honey producer.
“We’re pretty excited about it, with the brewery across the street and all these tourists stopping by,” said Ehman.
“Vendors are tickled about the opportunity and the public has been supportive, it’s been a really positive experience all the way around.”
While the market falls outside of the governing body for farmers market, the BC Association of Farmer’s Markets and the COVID policy that they’ve outline, Ehman has worked over the last month to put together a comprehensive set of rules for the market.
The policy combines recommendations for farmers’ markets, retail shops, as well as from regular markets, to provide an expansive guidelines for running the indoor market.
Moving forward, Ehman hopes to grow the market, with the opportunity for up to 11 vendors to be welcomed into the newly renovated distillery. While they have some permanent fixtures for the remainder of the summer, they’re will be a rotating group of vendors as well that will come and go depending on availability.
The indoor market is still accepting new vendors, although space is filling up. Interested parties can contact Ehman through the Mount 7 Distillery Facebook page or through email or phone.
The indoor market also gives Ehman a chance to show off the newly renovated distillery to the community as they experience delays with their opening.
“People are curious about the building and how it’s been transformed, they remember it from what it used to be and want to see what it is like now,” said Ehman.
Currently they’re aiming for a soft opening in December, to tie in with the ski season.
And while they aren’t sure that COVID will allow them to continue on with the markets once they open as a distillery, Ehman says they’ll be looking to hopefully keep 2-3 vendors around on Saturdays to provide a little shopping for the distilleries patrons.