Sardis Park, a former gravel pit, is now a vibrant destination – especially on Wednesday evenings. This five hectare park has been attracting local visitors since the 70s, unique with its looping trail around the pond and for the past few years, the weekly Eco Market.
The pond at Sardis Park was once used as as a local trout fishing destination as well as a swimming hole, and while eutrophication has made the pond unsuitable for these activities now, it remains a beautiful destination for families to visit and take in some serene views.
This past Wednesday, the park was full of life. By 4 p.m. the parking lot was already filled with Eco Market attendees. Vendors have set up booths in two rows along the western border of the park.
Not only does the market feature a variety of handcrafted goods, from jewellery to dog collars, but also a range of delicious, sustainable produce, including fresh vegetables and uniquely flavoured honey.
Some of the more seasoned vendors have been coming every week since Eco Market began in Sardis Park. For others, it is their first or second time being part of the event. The majority of the products and services at the market have come from right here in Chilliwack, and the artist or farmer is on-site to provide extensive knowledge.
There are families seated in the shade of the breezy trees, groups jogging around the 655 meter loop, face-painted kids climbing trees and play gyms, and geese flipping upside-down in the pond looking for food to snack on. Though the grass could use some rainfall, everyone appears to be having a great time in the afternoon sun.
Soft acoustic melodies from singing duo, soul2soul, echo throughout the entire park, providing a soundtrack for couples walking the trail and visitors meeting the vendors. The pair, Bernadine Morris and Sandy Forbes had played at the Eco Market once before and they will be returning again in August.
You can even have dinner while at the market, bring your own or stop by a food truck, like the Yummy Foodies wood-fired pizza. Visitors enjoy their food at the picnic tables while their dogs watch patiently from below.
The Eco Market takes place in Sardis Park (6898 School Lane) Wednesdays from 4 to 8 p.m., May through August. There are always new food vendors, local sellers and musical acts to enjoy. Visit TheEcoMarket.ca or on Facebook to learn more or become a vendor.
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