Posted on 30 May 2012 by Keith Lacey
Being able to showcase local and area musical talent has been a goal for Janis St. Louis since she first joined the Osoyoos Market on Main board of directors three years ago.
Mission accomplished as St. Louis has lined up local musicians to perform every Saturday from now until the end of September.
“One of the biggest reasons I joined the board three years ago was to try and bring in live entertainment,” said St. Louis, who is the president of the board of directors for 2012. “I thought it would really add to the festive atmosphere we want to create within the market, while also providing a regular venue for local musicians to perform in front of a captive audience.
“I know the response has been very good by not only the musicians we’ve hired to perform, but also the vendors who feel it has really been a nice added touch to the market.”
Market on Main officially opened for the 2012 season over the May 21 Victoria Day long weekend and will continue every Saturday at its headquarters on Main Street right next door to the Town of Osoyoos administration office until at least the end of September.
Local musicians Kansas Hatherly and her friend Mason Orr performed this past Saturday in front of an enthusiastic audience. Five or six local groups will alternate performances through the spring, summer and fall.
Because the market has just opened, there are a limited number of vendors signed up early in the season, but those numbers will grow significantly with each passing week, especially when local produce producers are able to bring fruit and vegetables to the market, said St. Louis.
“We’re starting off the year with 18 or 19 vendors, which is pretty good early on,” she said. “Last year, we peaked in the middle of summer with 37 vendors and I’m confident we’ll be able to get near that total once again this summer.
“We’re very happy with the number of vendors on board for early in the season and especially happy with the number of people who have come out to support the market during the first two weekends.”
Some of the vendors selling goods this past Saturday included photographers, jewelers, quilters, metal furniture makers, children’s clothes makers and business owners selling body products.
Market on Main has been a success story for many years because the most avid supporters truly believe in the concept of buying locally, said St. Louis.
“It’s all about buying locally and supporting the people who live in this community year-round and use our market to promote and sell their goods,” she said. “We have to support our local economy in a small town like this. It’s the only way many of these businesses can survive.”
Market on Main has always attracted a nice mixture of local residents, those visiting Osoyoos on vacation and those who don’t live here permanently, but make Osoyoos home during the warm weather months and that’s not going to change, she said.
Local businesses that assist in sponsoring the market as major sponsors include, Osoyoos Home Hardware, Nk’Mip Cultural Centre, Destination Osoyoos, Osoyoos Signs and realtors Diane Biernaskie and Jennifer Brock from MacDonald Realty.
Site managers Larry Gableman and George Lussier share the job for the season and do a terrific job keeping vendors and members of the public happy, she said.
Town of Osoyoos council has also been a vocal and strong supporter for many years, she said. Hours of operation are Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.