Shop local campaigns and markets get underway ahead of holiday shopping season
The holiday spirit is bright at the Lethbridge and District Exhibition's Big Christmas Farmers' Market.
Over 125 local vendors are set up and eager to sell their goods this weekend. Ruby Bannerman with Bootsma Bakery hopes it appeals to local shoppers who might want to avoid supply chain problems.
“We're just excited to be back in the community,” said Bannerman.
The market features lots of local vendors, a hot chocolate bar, a kid’s movie and an opportunity to roast marshmallows at an outdoor fire pit.
“It’s really important to shop local, stay local as much as we can, of course and support all of the little businesses that have gone through COVID-19 and that kind of thing,” said Bannerman.
LARGEST MARKET SINCE PANDEMIC BEGAN
This is the largest market the Lethbridge and District Exhibition has hosted since the pandemic began. Thursday over 1,000 customers come through the door.
“We’re really excited to welcome people back to enjoy the Christmas activities,” said Mavisha Maistry, director of communications and marketing with the Lethbridge and District Exhibition. “It’s really important for us to be able to be that gathering space for the community and to have that expansive space to welcome everybody, to have enough physical distance room and enough health and safety protocols.”
A local vendor at the market, The Little Nicaragua Coffee Company sources its coffee beans from their family farm in Nicaragua and recently opened a store front location in Lethbridge.
Co-owner David Ubeda, said this event is a great option for local businesses to meet with new customers.
Parking in Lethbridge, Friday Dec. 3, 2021
“Markets like this really help get your name out, it puts your product in front of customers that wouldn't come by your store front if they were driving by. But, something like this, their taking their time, their walking around and their actually looking to buy things,” said Ubeda.
It's not just the Exhibition getting in the holiday spirit. The Downtown BRZ is putting on different holiday campaigns throughout the month as a way to get people downtown.
“Super important to shop local this year, our businesses have been warriors through this pandemic. There ready to serve you,” said Emily Chong, marketing director with the Downtown Lethbridge BRZ.
For the first time, the BRZ will be offering free parking every Friday until Dec. 25.
“We thought it would be a great way to give back to the community, because it impacts both our community members and our business owners,” said Chong.
The Lethbridge and District Exhibition is participating in the restriction exemption program, so proof of vaccination will be required upon entry. The market is open until 8 p.m. today and runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Admission is $5 per person.
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