South Stormont ON – Being good neighbors is what living in Eastern Ontario is generally about, but concerns are growing over a motion that’s being voted on at a special meeting of Cornwall City council. The City, Downtown BIA, and Heart of the City have been trying to support and nurture the Cornwall Farmer’s market in George Assaly Lane now for three seasons.
After solid growth this first two seasons a new direction and design had been taken and Keitha Fisher and Tony Lackoix hired to market and manage, but after a promising start numbers of visitors and vendors have dwindled which has led to a request to move the time to Friday afternoons for two test dates this year with the hope of either adding Friday afternoons or moving from Saturday mornings; partly to attract more vendors some of whom are at nearby markets.
I spoke with Heart of the City honcho and City Councilor Denis Carr about this and he stated regarding the proposal:
I think it’s a good idea if it works.
Councilor Carr had no issue with potential parking or traffic issues on the busy downtown thoroughfare nor any concern about the nearby Long Sault market on Highway Two in South Stormont. And that is where some of the concern has come from as the Long Sault market has evolved steadily without government subsidization. (The Cornwall Market received a $10,000 grant this year for marketing and advertising)
Mayor Bryan McGillis stated that he was going to speak to some of the councilors in Cornwall about this as he and both Deputy Mayor Tammy Hart and council shared some concern at their Township meeting Wednesday night.
Vendors at the nearby Saturday morning Market on Pitt Street in the north end of town also voiced concern that some of the produce at the market is sold via The Agape Centre who purchase the produce from Farmboy, some of which isn’t remotely local.
The meeting is at City Hall today at 4 PM.
What do you think? You can post your comments below. I’ll be at the Long Sault Market on Friday and both Cornwall Markets Saturday morning to video comments from the public and vendors as well.