Meet Debbie Chmelyk & Pouce Community Market Vendors & Volunteers
Debbie Chmelyk enjoys cooking and doing crafty things, like sewing and crocheting. She knew that there were many talented artists and crafters in Pouce Coupe and the surrounding region, and for years she longed for a way to bring local crafters together and give them a venue to showcase and sell their work. The idea for a community-driven market began to take shape, so she recruited her daughter-in-law, Chelsie Chmelyk and her good friend Sukrit Parmar for help. It took about six months, but together they were able to generate community support and attract vendors and the first market was held in 2013.
The market started out as a twice-monthly event. It grew to be so popular that the group eventually decided to shift to a weekly market. The community’s response has been overwhelmingly positive, and the market has become something of a hub and a meeting place for locals each Saturday. In addition to its average of more than ten vendors, someone always makes a delicious, affordable hot lunch to sell and serve to market guests. People enjoy just coming to hang out, drink coffee, eat a tasty meal and listen to the live music that is often part of the market.
Debbie says that the market is truly a community effort. Many people volunteer their time to cook, set up, take down, clean up, advertise and promote the market. Whenever a decision needs to be made, vendors are invited to provide their input. Debbie, Sukrit and Chelsie have been pleased with the community’s vibrant enthusiasm for this grassroots effort. Debbie also notes that the vendors that have participated over the years have been wonderful. “No one competes with each other,” says Debbie, but rather, vendors work together to support and promote one another, which benefits everyone, including the community as a whole.
Creative. Community-Oriented. Welcoming.
The Pouce Community Market is a community-owned and vendor-style market featuring crafters, cooks and sellers who live in Pouce Coupe and the surrounding region. Started in 2013 by locals with a vision and a passion for creating and for showcasing the works of locals, the Pouce Community Market runs once weekly, year-round. Weekly markets feature up to 16 vendors selling everything from hand-made and up-cycled items like jewelry, home decor, clothing and delectable cooked and baked goods to fresh in-season garden produce and bedding plants. Stop in and enjoy a coffee or even a hearty, home-cooked lunch and listen to live local musical entertainment. You can also view and purchase artwork created by local artists. For more information or to inquire about vending, please visit the Pouce Community Market’s Facebook page.
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