Mulgrave’s Market by the Sea moves ahead with expansion plans

·3 min read

GUYSBOROUGH – Mulgrave’s Market by the Sea began in the summer of 2018 with an eye to bringing commerce into the town, creating a space for vendors to sell their wares and giving residents a chance to shop local. Four years later, the biweekly summer market is set to expand with funding provided by the provincial government and community-supported fundraisers.

Krista Luddington, who has had a hand in organizing the market since its inception, spoke to The Journal last week about what’s in store for market-goers this summer.

Over the first couple of years, the market experienced great success with support from food trucks and live music drawing in many Mulgrave residents. Last year, market organizers thought they should build on that success.

“We want a bit of a bigger presence in the town, where it is held at the McNair’s Cove Park, which is a focal point in town…and we thought, ‘What can we do to enhance that presence?’” said Luddington, adding that one of the things that they came up with that could be beneficial to community members and the market, “would be sun structures.”

Heather Brennan, a member of the market organizing group and former recreation and physical activity coordinator for the Town of Mulgrave, thought they could tap into funding and found an opportunity through the Department of Communities, Culture, Tourism and Heritage’s Community Recreation Capital Grant program. She was right: McNair’s Cove Park Revitalization Project, which includes the market, was granted $7,257.

Additional money for the proposed expansion, which includes a bird’s nest swing — a round, multi-person swing that sinks in like a nest — replacement of the playground perimeter and park benches has been generated through numerous community-based fundraisers which have netted, to date, almost $7,000.

“The sun structures are the biggest part of this project. It’s wonderful for market vendors because then we’re able to expand what type of vendors we can bring in,” said Luddington, explaining that some products could not withstand being in the sun for hours.

In addition to the benefit to vendors and market-goers, the sun structures will allow seniors to stay outside at the park longer with the shade and provide the same benefit to children attending day camp.

“We thought there’s no better way to contribute to the town but by doing something like this and it creates more visibility for the market,” said Luddington.

While Luddington is pleased to receive provincial funding, she also thanks the community for their continued support.

“It’s something we see time and time again in Mulgrave. It is one of the things that I love best about this town, it’s the people that make things happen. I’ve never known this town to sit and wait and hope that things align, we have a whole pile of doers in this community. When we started putting out these fundraisers, it was amazing to see community come together and support this common goal.

“We still have a little way to go but we certainly have enough to get going and we’re hoping to cover off the high majority of the project this year. This can’t happen without community, and we cannot thank everybody enough for continuing to support anything and everything that we put out there,” said Luddington. “And, it’s not just the market, it’s every single organization in town. Everybody is working towards a common goal and the residents see that.”

The Market by the Sea will be held in McNair’s Cove Park in the Town of Mulgrave every second Thursday, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., starting July 14. Additional vendors and sponsors are welcome. Watch the Market by the Sea Facebook page for a list of vendors and musical guests.

Lois Ann Dort, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Guysborough Journal

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