A Market with Rural Roots

To market, to market, a short drive to Kakabeka Falls

Brilliant sunshine from a perfect blue sky glints off a hand-made polished wooden chest; it skips across the tips of green bedding plants rustled by the wind, and plays with the varied textures and stylings of a bristle of Bear Sticks, the hand-crafted walking stick with attitude.

It is market season and the Kakabeka Farmer’s Market opened to a perfect pre-summer day in early June, with a bustling crowd of both patrons and vendors alike. Located at the Kakabeka Legion on Highway 11/17, 16.5 km from Thunder Bay and only minutes from the mighty Kakabeka Falls ,it is a must-visit destination on its own or as part of a Saturday drive in the country on your summer travels to Northwest Ontario.

In its third year of operation, the Kakabeka Farmer’s Market is a growing concern. Perfectly situated on the edge of farm country, the market is an ideal place to find not only bedding plants but in-season veggies, farm-fresh eggs, local Thunder Oak cheese and meat, as well as local chicken new to the market this year. Not to mention an array of baked goods, including vegan options, and handcrafted items.

On this opening market day, the tables indoors are bursting with breads and pies, plants and woodcrafts. A small forest of heritage tomato plants green up a corner of a table, preserves and jars of Boreal Berry Jam march in enticing lines along the edge of another, while colourful hand-poured candles catch the eye from across the room. Natural skin-care products, scented with essential oils, sit invitingly with little tester pots set along the table, and samples of pulla and fudge are on offer.

The room fills up with easy chatter as patrons wander the circular space with an armload of rhubarb, or munching on a giant cookie, or juggling a pie and a loaf of bread while flipping through a rack of hand-printed t-shirts. There is a laid-back atmosphere here that lends itself to conversations about the handcrafted items on display, the woodcrafts and work by local artists and photographers.

Meanwhile, tempting smells drift from the Legion canteen as breakfasts of bacon and eggs, toast and pancakes are prepared, adding to the overall sense of community created by the intimate, easily accessible space and friendly vendors.

The Market runs Saturdays 10 am to 1 pm from June 11 to October 8, and breakfast is served from 9 am until noon.

For Market updates be sure to check out the Kakabeka Farmer’s Market Facebook page and website: www.kakabekafarmersmarket.ca.

About Heather Peden

Heather Peden is a writer, blogger and photographer living in Neebing, Ontario, a rural neighbouring municipality south of Thunder Bay. Heather has a passion for what she calls “life in the wilds of Northwest Ontario”, and it's reflective in her blog, “Three Dogs and a Couch,” and photoblog “Light Sifting.”

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