The wait is officially over — the new Charlottetown waterfront farmers’ market operating in Founders’ Hall opens Friday.
The Founders’ Food Hall and Market building opens at 8 a.m. with most of the vendors opening at 11 a.m. The plan is the market will operate seven days a week until the end of October, before pulling back operations to three days a week during the winter months.
The media were given a tour of the facility on Wednesday.
For Joanne MacMillan, customer relations and tenant services manager for Port Charlottetown, it’s a dream come true. It was her vision that led to this urban market and she has spent almost three years trying to make it happen.
“I’m as excited today as I was the day I was asked to do the project. It has come a long way,’’ said MacMillan, who also managed the operation when Founders’ Hall was an interpretive centre. “I’m very familiar with the building. I love it and I’ve always had a vision to turn it into something where everybody can come every day and enjoy it.’’
Inside the market
Following vendors can be found at the Founders’ Food Hall and Market:
- Visitor information centre, Stir It Up, Receiver Coffee Company, Rawsome Juice, Doughnuts By Design, Upstreet Craft Beer, Truckin’ Roll, Holy Fox, Rising Tide Oyster Bar, Green Fork, Famous Peppers Fiamma, Big Burger, Maritime Marzipan, Soap & Candle From The Hive, Oh Hey P.E.I., Happy Potter, Two Beggars, Matos Winery & Distillery, Maritime Madness, Founders’ Delicatessan
- Hours of operation: Building hours are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- Each vendor may operate anytime during building hours so organizers recommend checking the website to see each vendor’s specific hours. Market will operate seven days a week until the end of October and then readjust to a winter schedule
- On the web: foundersfoodhall.com
Port Charlottetown purchased the building in August 2018 from developer Paul Madden. Madden had purchased it from the Charlottetown Area Development Corporation (CADC).
The market measures 16,000 square feet, it has a mezzanine level upstairs so people can sit and eat if they want, and it has a capacity for about 500 people. The market is also fully licensed with one of the vendors being a beer operation.
“We wanted to turn the building into something that would fit the waterfront and fit in with our cruise passengers,” MacMillan said. “A lot of times, cruise passengers will get off and they want to try a local experience on food and now they can walk next door and pretty much try anything local we have to offer.’’
But organizers say the market focus is on Island residents.
Vendors include everything from an oyster bar, Famous Peppers pizza, Big Burger, a doughnut shop to vegan options, as well as locally grown fruit and produce. There are 10 different vendors that serve food of some sort. And, there are market vendors where people can purchase items to take with them -- including a pottery stop where people can paint their own pottery.
The building also contains a visitors’ information centre and offers free Wifi.