Eco Market expands to Cultus on Fridays

Organizers behind Sardis Park's Eco Market are creating a second market at Cultus Lake on Friday nights.

People who miss out on Wednesday night’s Eco Market in Sardis Park now have another chance during the week to catch local, environmentally friendly vendors who may not be available elsewhere.

The Eco Market has set up a second location, in Cultus Lake on Friday nights, 5–9 p.m., in an effort to bring their services closer to the residents and tourists flocking to the lake every weekend.

The market adheres to strict principles from the B.C. Farmers’ Market Association of “make, bake, grow.” Businesses must be eco-friendly, and sell food, or offer health and fitness products and services.

This second location will add to the mix of events already on offer at Cultus Lake, such as the Saturday Market in the Park that has operated Saturday mornings for over a decade.

“This is a second market at Cultus. Now Cultus will have their Saturday morning market, and then the Eco Market is going to be there on Friday nights,” said Floystrup. “I think it’s a different type of demographic that would be interested in the night market as opposed to the day.”

Floystrup expects the Eco Market to draw more families, especially those for whom getting out the door early on a Saturday is a challenge. She also hopes the market catches the wave of Cultus tourists already heading to the lake.

Eco Market organizers took pains to confirm with downtown’s Party in the Park organizers, also held Friday nights, that there will be no competition for customers. Indeed, people heading to Cultus on Friday nights tend to be tourists coming for the water.

“Most of the people that are going to Cultus Lake are going to Cultus Lake. They’re not really coming to Chilliwack per se,” said Floystrup.

The new Eco Market is starting out with 10 vendors, the same amount that organizers started with in Sardis last year. Since then, the three-year-old Sardis market has grown to include 22 season-long vendors, with an additional 5-10 on a casual basis.

“Time will tell whether or not it’s going to be a good fit. The first year is always the toughest,” said Floystrup.

At the Sardis Eco Market, Floystrup estimates that 500 people attend every Wednesday. One draw includes the free yoga and Zumba classes in the park, new this year.

The Cultus Lake Eco Market will maintain its focus on tried and true goods and services that people have come to know at Sardis: food straight from farmers and bakers, hand-made works by local artisans in a variety of different media, and health and fitness services. Registered non-profit societies can receive free tables.

Editor’s note: This text has been modified from an earlier version.