Queen Charlotte Farmers’ Market
The Queen Charlotte Farmers’ Market has been a part of the community for decades, and some of its vendors have been with the market since it first began. The Queen Charlotte Farmers’ Market features growers, farmers, cooks, bakers and artisans from all over the island, and everything sold in the market has been grown, baked or created by an island resident. The market began as a way to showcase the work of local food and art producers and to encourage a self-sustaining island economy. But over the years the market has grown to be more than a place to buy local food and artwork. Today it is a place for friends to meet, chat and spend time together every Saturday. Visitors will find a variety of goods throughout the season, including fresh produce in the summer, local meat, poultry and seafood, eggs, baked goods, gourmet food products, handcrafts and artwork.
Weekly orders are available for residents who want a little bit of everything prepared especially for them. The Daajing Giids Farmers’ Market is a vibrant, dynamic place to be both for vendors and for guests.
Kay Pringle is one of the many regular vendors at the Queen Charlotte Farmers' Market and has helped to organize and run it for the past two years along with the Village of Daajing Giids. Some of the vendors, including Kay, have been a part of the Farmer's Market since its early days, and she has seen it grow and change over the last two-plus decades into the vibrant place that it is today. "It's more than a place to buy local things," says Kay. "It has become a place for people to hang out and visit every weekend." Many visitors come just to be able to see their fellow Daajing Giids residents and will sit and chat and drink coffee for hours.
Kay is one of the vendors who offers food for sale to Market customers. She usually has something going in her crock pot, like chili. She notes that the vendors go out of their way to accommodate one another and not compete, so everyone offers something a little bit different, and everyone charges a reasonable price for their goods. "You can't get a bowl of chili and a fresh bun for five dollars in many places," she points out. The market has something for everyone, and a surprising array of talented artists and cooks, like the local newspaper editor who spends his Saturdays in the market cooking up mouth-watering crepes.
As with other places on the island, Kay says "You have to be able to do a bit of everything to get by here." Kay herself has worked a number of jobs since she arrived here in 1973, and is now "retired," although preparing and baking for the market takes up a good portion of her week. Islanders are resilient, and in spite of the some of the challenges, "We have fresh air and clean, drinkable water. I feel very privileged to live here!"