Sunny Saturdays in Beechwood will get a little more exciting this weekend with the opening of the Beechwood Market in the east end of Ottawa. This will be the kick off of their third season, but this year, things are a little bit different. The market used to be located at 99 Beechwood Ave on property owned by Claridge Homes. This year you will find them at 135 Barrette St, the former home of the St Charles Church, now called St. Charles Market. After the church had closed in 2010, it was purchased by the development group ModBox.
ModBox is a collaboration between Linebox Studio and The Lake Partnership Inc., two firms who both have a rich history for making modern homes. They intend to transform the St Charles Market into a hub for community and culture in the east end of the city without losing its historic presence. The three main facades and the bell tower of the church will be maintained, while townhouses and local vendors will surround the exterior.
The grassy area, where the farmers market will be located, will remain as a community gathering space. Check out some rendering of the project here.
This development brings more space for the community in Beechwood, after the major fire that burned down numerous shops. “Beechwood is making leaps and bounds” said Chris Penton, the man behind the market. “The market itself has become a real gathering spot. You’ll see upwards of 400 – 600 people every weekend”.
For the opening weekend, the market has planned events and activities for the entire family. In the morning, the market goers will be serenaded by a ukulele troop, and a little bit of Shakespeare provided by Shakespeare at the Park, who will performing in the same space later in the year. The resident market musician, Tyler King, will be playing tunes all day long. For the kids, they can hop on a John Deere Tricycle and enjoy the space along with their parents.
There will be 30 vendors on site, including fresh baked goods from Nona’s Bakery, all natural dog treats from Buddy Bites, and some fresh vegetables from the Happy Radish Organic Farm. If you’re looking for a full meal while you enjoy the market, you can pick up brunch from Baccanalle for some Caribbean soul food
The Beechwood Market (135 Barrette Street) is open from 9am – 2pm every Saturday. The season ends on October 8, 2016. Parking is free and often available on the neighbouring side street. Check out their website for more info.