A new season of the Urban Park Market is kicking off this week.
The weekly event hosted by the Downtown Timmins BIA starts Thursday, July 9. It runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The popular market featuring fresh produce, baking, local cheeses and more has been held downtown Timmins for years. There are some changes for COVID-19 this year, though.
Instead of rotating locations throughout the downtown during the summer, it will be set up on the same blocks of Third Avenue every week.
For the opening day, it will be two blocks — between Spruce and Pine, and Pine and Cedar.
As more farmers are added, Downtown Timmins BIA executive director Noella Rinaldo said they'll expand to a third block, between Cedar and Balsam. The blocks affected will be closed, but the intersections will be open for north/south traffic.
For opening day, Rinaldo said there are about 10 producers and that number is expected to grow to 18 by the end of the summer.
While there won't be directional arrows to follow, she said there will be social distancing stickers so people know where to lineup for the farmers.
"We’re only dealing with pedestrians, we’re not dealing with cars so we debated if we would have them going in one direction but our streets are very wide, so we’re very comfortable with not having them go in one direction,” she said.
Hand sanitizing stations will be set up at each of the corners and at the farmers, said Rinaldo.
“We’re prepared with social distancing and hand sanitizing so we’re hoping people will feel comfortable and be able to come down and I totally understand that for some people this will be the first time coming in the downtown,” she said.
“This will be a great way to enjoy the downtown and the weather’s going to be beautiful, it’s going to be a great day to see the farmers and people to get back into a little bit."
Vendors will have plastic bags, and if you bring your own customers have to pack their items, similar to the practice at grocery stores. If you want to purchase a bag, Rinaldo said the BIA is selling some for $2, with the proceeds for the Anti-Hunger Coalition Timmins.
This year, the market is the only weekly event downtown. The rotating Urban Park events have been cancelled. Rinaldo said they are working on some ideas to promote