Cornwall Ontario Downtown Farmers Market No More – DBIA Pulls Plug – May 23, 2013

Coffey's Coffee at the Market
Painting of Reg Coffey at the Cornwall Farmers Market

CFN – Sadly the Downtown Cornwall Farmers Market is no more.   The local DBIA seemed intent to kill it two years ago when local workhorse Gaye Adams was replaced by Tony Lakroix and Keitha Fisher for one year before Mr. Lakroix took over in 2012.

I feel a personal sadness as we all worked hard in the first two years of the market and it had a wonderful informal buzz to it.   Special events, good food, and some great chat were the norm Saturday mornings; and hot donuts from Riley’s bakery across the street which went really well with some fresh ground Coffey’s Coffee.



Doggies Did it at the Market too!

The change in direction by the BIA however alienated many of the original vendors.  Bizarre contracts from Mr. Lakriox scared away new vendors, selling food for wholesalers,  and with almost no marketing support the writing was on the wall which was great news for the Long Sault Market and Seaway Market in the Brick’s parking lot.

Personally I was hoping to see the market evolve and capitalize on the downtown feel as Cornwall is desperate for more action for Pitt Street on weekend.

Sadly the DBIA disagreed and now the market is no more.

What were some of your best memories of the Cornwall Farmer’s Market?  You can post your comments below.

LSM 240x140 2013-05-13


  1. amusing how they installed the gazebo over head like thing now its a waste just like the rest of the stuff they do for the city first the removal of cornfest which was a staple part of the downtown events it seems every chance they have at having more people interact with the downtown they remove it whens this (censor) going to change for the better

  2. it was the first place I tried buffalo meat, it seemed to be more material things to buy, that in my opinion wasn’t a bad thing! enjoyed the coffee and seeing the artists at work, too bad they wouldn’t have had more fresh vegetable vendors like at the brick parking lot one has, to me that would have brought in more customers, it could even have spilled out onto pitt street, it was sort of hidden where it was and we were asked often when leaving spinners after breakfast where the market was located.

  3. When they unceremoniously replaced Gaye Adams they took the heart out of the market. It was the way they (the city representatives on the market committee) handled the situation and the resulting lack of vision for the market that made my decision to move to the Long Sault market…..well, that and the hours of the market.

    I really didn’t like getting up that early on a Saturday morning but I did it because of the sense of community in the market. The other vendors were depending on me for their morning coffee.

  4. I can see how taking Gaye Adams out of an equation would null it’s proof. What?

  5. Anyone else think the old parking lot and grounds from the si miller arena would make a great place for a community farm/greenhouse/market?

  6. Maybe the City of Cornwall has no money left to operate the Market. I hear they’re spending money on lawyers on the Mayor’s behalf!

  7. Lack of vision seems to be handicap for decision makers in Cornwall. This latest one only provides one less reason for consumers to consider shopping the core area of town. Or is that one less reason to consider the area in question as being the core?

    At any rate there is a great market located on the WEST ISLAND that has a terrific amount to offer and stopping in LANCASTER on the way home only adds to a days experience.

    Businesses in Cornwall could benefit greatly by dismissing these individuals and/or groups and consider the successes of areas like WESTBORO in Ottawa for an example. When things just aren’t happening you sooner or later have to get your head out of the sand and open your eyes.

    GOOD LUCK REG. Unfortunate but necessary decision to do the Long Sault thing.

  8. Long Sault welcomes everyone to their great and growing farmers market on Friday June 7th – 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
    This market is flourishing because of the support from our trustworthy council, the hard work of the merchants and the drive of the organizer Donna Primeau of Showcase Video and Dollar Store in the plaza.
    If you want any information about Long Sault, check the community webpage or the facebook page Long Sault.
    The few times I visited the Cornwall market I was disappointed and went away with a ho hum “is this all this city has to offer”

  9. Didn’t they hire consultants also at the tune of about 20,000.00 or more a couple of times? They try to make it like the Ottawa market , but were not Ottawa most people here don’t have goverment jobs , when you have people who are always self serving, how can you grow as a city.
    All that money wasted once again on Pitt, when other areas require so much.

  10. Why did’nt the cornwall citizens encourage this downtown market? That ‘s who seems to be at fault….people here have no pride in their city& thus visit other places like Montreal , Ottawa etc.let’s get it going again with the people who really care to attract new ideas & make this town alive again.
    Wake up people in cornwall,start showing you careNOW.

  11. Author

    Sue I can tell you that’s not the case. The first two years of the market the people did come out and support it. There were some interesting ideas and concepts; but if the investment isn’t put there by the city or dbia any group would fail. That investment and committment was not there the last two years. It’s almost as though the powers that be don’t want activity in the downtown core on weekends? There were some very loyal visitors to the market for vendors like Lang Farms, the buffalo people and Coffey’s Coffee when Reg was there, but you need more than three vendors to make a good market.

  12. I too am sad to see the Market dissolve but do not agree with Jamie’s take on things.
    For the last 2 years, I was a regular vendor at the Market and we did see a lot of traffic come through. Our market offered something different from the Seaway Market and many people would visit us both. It was a great meeting place on Saturday mornings and although Reg wasn’t there with his coffee, there were many other options nearby in the Downtown core for customers to get their morning fix.
    I don’t understand why the need to point the finger and blame somebody is necessary.

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