Qualicum’s Uptown Summer Market

OverviewWhat can be lovelier on a soft summer evening than a relaxed outdoor market in a beautiful setting, topped up with live music and talented vendors?  There isn’t much that tops an experience like that, and we recently enjoyed such an affair at the  Qualicum Beach Uptown Summer Market.

Baked goods at Uptown Summer Market, Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island

Baked goodies feature at the market

Organized by the Qualicum Beach Downtown Business Association, the evening market runs every Thursday during July and August from 6-9 p.m.  A long block of Second Avenue (the main shopping area in Qualicum Beach) is closed to vehicular traffic and vendors set up their tents offering a wide variety of beautiful and intriguing offerings.

Hand-knit slippers at Uptown Summer Market, Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island

Who could resist these cozy hand-knit slippers?

We spent a happy hour wandering up the street enjoying the very relaxed ambiance – a big change from the busier and more frenetic farmers markets and other street markets held throughout the Oceanside area.  There was plenty of time and space to peruse goods and chat with vendors, who hail from as far away as Campbell River.

 

Jazz musicians at Uptown Summer Market, Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island

Live music is a much-appreciated feature

The added bonus to the evening was a very cool jazz duo, perched in front of one of the original charming Qualicum Beach homes.  Mellifluous tunes emanated on to the street and convinced us to sit awhile and simply enjoy.  One couple was inspired enough by the music to share a dance in the middle of everything.

Rustic birdhouse at Uptown Summer Market, Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island

Unique garden décor…..

You won’t find a lot of produce at this market, but for those in search of food there is a food truck serving up yummy samosas and Mirella Trozzo’s very excellent Italian baking is featured  at the Biscotti de Notte tent.

What visitors to the Uptown Summer Market will find is a multiplicity of beautiful hand-crafted items that could well get your Christmas shopping started early.  Cozy slippers, beautiful windchimes, garden décor, mouth-watering baking.  And for those needing a little relaxation, three masseuse vendors ply their trade.  Several of the local businesses remain open late as well.

Teapot and cutlery windchime, Uptown Summer Market, Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island

…and upcycled silverware

While the Uptown Summer Market was originally designed to draw summer visitors to the downtown core in the evening it is also drawing locals.  We ran in to some neighbours as we strolled along the street, and noted that quite a few of the attendees were recognizable local faces.  Regardless of your residency or lack of same, however, be prepared for a delightful evening that offers the quintessential Qualicum Beach essence of summer.  It doesn’t get any sweeter than this.

The Qualicum Beach Uptown Summer Market runs up Second Avenue from Memorial Avenue to Primrose Street, every Thursday evening in July and August .

           wheelchair-l GPS co-ordinates are:

            Lat. 49.347099  Long. -124.441742

            N 49 20.826  W 124 26.505

Shirley

About Shirley

More years ago than I like to remember, I completed the Journalism program at Vancouver Community College and launched straight into a career as a newspaper reporter (thanks to my journalism professor Nick Russell and an opening at the venerable daily Alberni Valley Times.) My work as a news reporter/feature writer/columnist and ultimately, newspaper and magazine editor, took me to many interesting places and introduced me to hundreds of interesting characters over the years. I loved every minute of it, but burnout caught up with me while I was trying to juggle the simultaneous editing of five trade magazines, and for 27 years I abandoned my keyboard (on a professional basis, at least) and followed my heart in a variety of other careers. In 2010 I returned to the journalistic fold, thanks to the encouragement (nay – nagging!) of my husband. I feel no regret – only great joy to be back at the keyboard, and to be spending time interviewing interesting folks and discovering great places.
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