Thursday, August 29, 2013

Farmers' Markets: More Than Just the Food

Entrance to the Bridgetown farmers' market 
As in many towns everywhere, here in Nova Scotia the farmers' markets draw locals and tourists alike.  Bridgetown in the Annapolis Valley has a small one every Tuesday.  I decided to check it out, to browse and to see what was on offer.  It is now late August and things are slowing down, but it is still summer with offerings from the gardens.

Families take their children to the market and to play in the park.
The market is held in Jubilee Park on the edge of the Annapolis River.  It had just opened when I arrived.


I bought some strawberries at the booth below.  The gentleman moved to the Valley from Holland 45 years ago 

A bite to eat at the market before going home, with sausages always popular

In early August two of my sisters and one brother-in-law and I went to the market in Hubbards, a small town along Nova Scotia's South Shore. This beautiful area on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean is home in summer--along with its residents--to Americans, Germans and other Canadians, people "from away."  In the Maritime provinces (Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick) and Newfoundland that is the common expression for anyone not from there.  But  once born and bred in these Atlantic provinces, one is forever a Maritimer or a Newfoundlander.  And proud to be so!
My sisters Carol (forefront) and Anne and brother-in-law Stephen 

We arrived at the market around 10 in the morning.  It was busy.  The majority of stalls were in two rooms inside a large barn-like red building with high beams, wooden walls and floors.  The place was filled with people of all ages, some buying and some selling.  It was lively with a group of three men entertaining the crowd with what we call "good ole down home fiddling music."

On the right, below, a view of the interior of the building.  One felt the friendliness immediately upon entering.  The wooden beams and floors, the many tables of vegetables, bread, fish and wine and the warmth of
the locals added to the charm of it all.
All manner of bread is offered: baguettes, round and oblong loaves, brown, white and whole grain, with much of it made in traditional European style


 Always some fruit and vegetables 

Choose your cheese

A little French Canadian influence
We headed outdoors where there were a couple more booths before leaving for the town parade held a little later that day.
Carrying some fresh bread as we leave Hubbards market
Two weekends ago I drove down to Annapolis Royal to look around their outdoor market, held from mid May to mid October.  It was also their annual "Paint the Town Red" day.  Artists choose spots throughout the town and set up their easels to paint whatever attracts them.  Later, the paintings are judged and then sold.

Annapolis Royal is situated along the Annapolis Basin, an offspring of the Bay of Fundy whose tides are the highest in the world.  It is renowned for some of the best lobster and scallops worldwide.

It was a beautiful sunny day, so perfect for the artists and those wishing to browse at the market.  The town was busy with cars parked everywhere and people wandering the streets.  I watched several artists at work and, as well, enjoyed the water views.  Below, a couple of the artists I came across.

Annapolis Royal dates back to 1605 and is Canada's oldest town.  Fort Anne was the British stronghold.  The French fort is in Port Royal, across the Annapolis Basin.  I wrote about both of these forts in summer 2010.  (Just go to my blog post and click on 2010.)

Fort Anne
The market was well underway when I finally wandered past the fort  to the market area.  People were strolling, buying. talking and enjoying the music.

Below, the lady musician on an electronic keyboard singing and playing to the crowd and a gent who loved it, dancing to the music.

I bought the last two baguettes.

The Annapolis Valley is well known for its fruit and berries.

A couple of ladies having a bite to eat before heading home.
My favourite sign. It was near where I had parked my car; on another day I might have taken advantage of it.  The house and chairs are below.

Many markets, large and small, are held throughout Nova Scotia in summer and each will have its own unique flavor and style.  Some markets are open throughout the year.  When visiting Nova Scotia or elsewhere, visit one and along with the locals enjoy the atmosphere.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for this post, Janet, although it has made me soooo homesick. We couldn't get down from Ottawa (which also has a wonderful market)this year, but hoping for next year. Best wishes as always. Max