INNISFAIL – The novel Market On Main event in the historical block of downtown is back this year for an encore and organizers are hoping to have a first full season with great summer weather, a promised new look on Main Street, and best of all, fewer worries from a receding pandemic.
Last year, the market kicked off a four-week pilot project on Aug. 18 for its first year as an outdoor market on Main Street between 50th and 51st avenues. It ran every Tuesday from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. until Sept. 8.
This year, Market On Main, which is put together by the Innisfail and District Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Innisfail, will boast a full season featuring 14 consecutive Tuesdays, running from 3 to 7 p.m. starting on June 15 and winding up on Sept. 14. The weekly event is being seen as a primary summer attraction for the town’s planned new, jazzed-up look for the historical block of downtown.
Carla Gabert, manager of the Innisfail chamber, said the expanded Market On Main will have volunteer members from local adult and youth service groups at entrance points on both sides of the block for traffic control as well as to ensure citizens are going in the right direction. With the pandemic still very much on people’s minds, there will be hand sanitizer and masks available.
“Because of COVID, we need to make sure we get our directions going right, and it is to help funnel traffic the right way,” said Gabert, adding organizers are asking for a one-week commitment from volunteers to help out. She said event organizers will start set up at 2:30 p.m. and likely finish packing up by 7:15 p.m.
“That is giving us about a half an hour set up time and about a 15 minute take down time,” she said.
Gabert said last week that Market On Main had so far attracted “just shy of a dozen” vendors. As for a hoped-for larger number when June 15 rolls around, she said organizers will see “how it goes.
“I mean, do we hope it will get bigger? Definitely. We have a great group to get it started with,” said Gabert, adding there is a good variety of vendors from the ones already committed, ranging from crafts, to growers, and food trucks.
“There are all kinds of vendors coming forward. It’s good for everybody. It’s good for our downtown businesses and our downtown restaurants,” she added. “The more traffic in that area of town the better. I think it is going to be an excellent event and it is going to draw people to Innisfail too. We are really excited to be one of the partners on it.”
Meanwhile, the longstanding Innisfail Farmers Market kicked off another season on May 20 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Innisfail Arena. Organizers noted COVID-19 precautions are in effect, and are asking citizens to wear masks. The farmers market at the arena will run every Thursday from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m.
For more information about Market On Main, contact the Innisfail chamber by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 403-227-1177.