Comox Valley Farmers’ Market feeling squeezed for space

Comox Valley Farmers’ Market feeling squeezed for space

The Comox Valley Farmers’ Market is feeling the squeeze at the Exhibition Grounds.

For two consecutive years, CVFM general manager Twila Skinner said booking requests have been denied without consultation, and the market has been automatically displaced to the Comox Valley Sports Centre. She is concerned it will continue to happen.

“With only having 27 weeks outside at the exhibition grounds, if it happens multiple times, it affects vendors in a big way,” Skinner said in a presentation Nov. 5 at regional district committee of the whole. “For vendors, this is their livelihood, and a decrease in 25-40 per cent (of sales) is significant for them.”

Moving sites brings parking issues and a lower number of customers, added Skinner, who feels one group should not automatically be displaced over another.

She asked the committee about protocols to deal with multiple events that use the same spot at the same time.

“What gives one user group preference over another? Why are there no attempts to make something work between all parties.”

Skinner notes the CVFM represents a significant economic and social benefit to the Valley. Along with the year-round, Saturday market, it operates seasonal markets Sundays in Cumberland and Wednesdays in downtown Courtenay.

“The bounty of food available year-round is enjoyed by several thousands of patrons. We contribute over $2.5 million annually to the Comox Valley economy. Farmers’ markets are only gaining popularity and strength, and the numbers will only increase going forward.”

The market is asking the CVRD to facilitate conversations, and to collaborate with groups that have conflicts with dates and locations to reach a reasonable solution – which might, in the end, mean the market is displaced as other events continue to grow.

“We need to minimize the impacts as much as possible,” Skinner said.

The committee asked for a staff report outlining rental arrangements for the fairgrounds.

Area C director Edwin Grieve questions how the district can maintain this function without much money coming its way.

He notes that Vancouver Island Music Fest is requesting a waiving of fees. He also notes a desire to install washrooms and more hydro, even though the CVRD has yet to pay off its long-term debt from the last batch installed. He feels the committee needs more than a cursory report.

“We have to look into how we’re going to grow this site properly,” Grieve said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A mother duck leads her brood of ducklings past some benches in the courtyard at Mark R Isfeld School in Courtenay. Photo by Kailena Krutzmann
Ducklings bring joy to students at Courtenay school

Brood of duckings in the courtyard at Mark R Isfeld School

The current location of Comox Valley Search and Rescue on Moray Avenue in Courtenay. Google Maps photo
Comox Valley Search and Rescue aiming to purchase a roof for their rescuers

Their goal is to raise between $1.2 and $1.5 million, approximately the purchase price of a facility

A bear is seen walking down Alderwood Place in east Courtenay Sunday (May 9) morning. Video screenshot/Kristie Cave
Video: Bears spotted throughout Comox Valley

Hide food sources, keep garbage away: conservation

Carter Woods was first across the line at the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Saturday in Altstadt, Germany. File photo
Cumberland mountain biker wins World Cup race in Germany

Carter Woods of Cumberland won a World Cup mountain bike race Saturday… Continue reading

The flowers of Darmera peltata (Indian rhubarb) before the leaves emerge. Photo by Leslie Cox
DUCHESS OF DIRT: Plenty of ‘wow’ factor in the garden in spring

Leslie Cox Special to The Record I can’t help it. I like… Continue reading

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The following is a list of restaurants offering take-out and patio dining. ADOBE STOCK IMAGE
List of Comox Valley restaurants offering take-out, patio dining options

Restaurants in the Comox Valley continue to adapt to government-imposed restrictions in… Continue reading

The only access to 5th Street bridge heading east (toward Lewis Park) is via Anderton Avenue. Photo by Terry Farrell.
Single lane alternating traffic controls on Courtenay bridge now in effect

Single lane alternating traffic on the 5th Street Bridge is now in… Continue reading

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add six seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

Nuu-chah-nulth woman recovering from gunshot wounds in weekend incident near Ucluelet

Nurse Gurinder Rai, left, administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Maria Yule at a Fraser Health drive-thru vaccination site, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The site is open for vaccinations 11 hours per day to those who have pre-booked an appointment. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID vaccine bookings to open for adults 40+, or 18+ in hotspots, across B.C.

Only people who have registered will get their alert to book

Most Read