Need a little something to help refresh yourself as you explore the Kootenay Arts communities? Why not make a stop at a unique farmer’s market and pick up some produce, baked goods, yummy treats or even something that you can take home like wine or crafts. Large or small, with different offerings at every stop, you’re bound to discover something local to that region. Most outdoor markets run through the summer from end of April until October. Make sure you head for one of them on the right day by checking our suggestions below and clicking further on the links for more information.
Fernie: Fernie Mountain Market
If you’re beginning your journey in the Rockies, check out the famous Fernie Mountain Market which is held on Sundays. Under a back-drop of dramatic mountain ranges, you can pick up anything from fresh fruit and veggies to flowers or grab a quick bite from the food trucks as you stroll around looking at local artisans who are showcasing their latest creations.
Creston Valley: Creston Valley Farmer’s Market
As you continue your journey, you can stop at the large Creston Valley Farmer’s Market. This diverse market has over 130 vendors and consists of a mix of growers, artisans, craftspeople, and even performances. You will find an exciting assortment of fruits, vegetables, meats, eggs, honey, baked good and preservers. Some of Creston Valley’s most skilled artisans showcase their handcrafted pottery, soaps, jewelry, textiles, paintings and more. You can even find local wines, ciders and spirits here. You will want to bring the whole family along to this award winning market as there is something for everyone.
Nelson & Kootenay Lake: Nelson Farmers Market, Kaslo Saturday Market & Lardeau Valley Market
Due to popularity, Nelson Farmers Market hosts two markets each week. One on Saturdays at Cottonwood Falls Park and the other on Wednesdays at the end of Baker Street, their main thoroughfare. If you’re looking to explore the town, either location is a great way to start. Cottonwood Falls Park is a must see for its waterfall and distinctive bridge and Japanese gardens, while Baker Street is the heart of Nelson’s shopping area. All market vendors sell products they make, bake or grow as access to local produce and interactions between farmers and customers is a priority for the community of Nelson. Heading up the lake on Highway 3A you can stop at the Kaslo Saturday Market. It’s small and cozy with majestic views that juxtapose the charming quality of the market. If you’re feeling adventurous, you could continue going all the way to North Kootenay Lake until you reach Lardeau. The Lardeau Valley Market is held on Sundays and is well worth the drive for the incredible views.
Arrow Slocan: Nakusp Farmer Market, New Denver Friday Market & Slocan Artisan/Farmer’s Market
If you decide to head over to Arrow Lakes, the Nakusp Farmer Market has a large market that is held on Saturday mornings. With a long history, more than 7000 people visit the market every year to buy original products directly from the source. If you decide to head down Highway 6, you can stop at the New Denver Friday Market which you guessed correctly, it is held on Fridays. Slocan Artisan/Farmer’s Market is another charming market, that is held in Slocan City on Saturday mornings. Both of these markets offer a fantastic way to connect with local farmers, buy produce and even find natural medicine.
Revelstoke: Revelstoke Farm & Craft Market
From there, if you head back up toward the Rockies to Revelstoke, check out the Revelstoke Farm & Craft Market also held on Saturday mornings. This market was started in 1985 in the Grizzly Plaza making it easy and accessible for the community and local businesses. They call themselves a “grassroots” market, as all the produce and products are made by local farmers, bakers and artisans.
Castlegar: Castlegar Craft & Farmer’s Market
Last but not least, the Castlegar Craft & Farmer’s Market is held on Saturdays. Here you will find an abundance of crafts and fresh produce.
At any of these spots, be sure to stretch your legs, and take the time to walk around and soak up the magnificent surroundings while sipping on a local cider or munching on a perfectly baked muffin. While there are outdoor markets all around BC, there is something special about the Kootenay Arts communities and the desire of these regions to bring local produce, products and baked goods to their community. So pull over, and grab a little something that can help you keep going on your own journey while getting to know locals and the scenic area while you do. Check out the other ‘Trip Ideas’ offered on Kootenay Arts to help make the most of your time spent in these communities. To keep up-to-date with when these markets are held be sure to view the Kootenay Arts Events Calendar.