Jim Elliot/Salmon Arm observer It’s Handmade Shoppe co-owner Karen Dow explains the aquaponic process that will be used to grow fresh vegetables year-round in a large room at the back of Westgate Mall on Saturday, April 1.

Westgate Market growing a new concept

Shopping experience to be based on Vancouver’s Granville Island model

Imagine a place where you can grab a meal with a friend, go for a workout, take an art class, pick up a gift, buy hunting and fishing supplies or relax with a beverage.

Welcome to Westgate Public Market, a destination that will be the only fully indoor marketplace in the B.C. Interior.

“We’re trying to create a sort of (Vancouver’s) Granville Island Market in the Interior,” says Karen Dow, co-owner of The Handmade Shoppe, The Ugly Mug and Splash Outlet. “And it will be our first year anniversary on April 28.”

Operators of the 10,000 square foot, year-round market will lease space to owner-operated businesses that feature fresh foods, locally sourced products, services and general mercantile shops.

The market will be a community gathering place, providing local entrepreneurs an opportunity to build, grow, or expand their business.

Already operating in the building are: The Handmade Shoppe, Westside Stores, Salmon Arm’s Bulldogs Boxing Club and Heritage House Jewellers.

The building is a popular venue for concerts through Ted Crouch’s Acoustic Avenue and artists of all genres and ability sign up for classes in a variety of art forms.

Other tenants include: The Chalk Paint Studio, Splash Outlet, The Ugly Mug Bistro, which serves vegetables and snacks to suit any meal, Living Leaf Aquaponics, Living Leaf Market and Essential Wellness Spa Services.

Westgate’s new public market is slated to open in June 2017 and includes the introduction of Living Leaf Aquaponics, which will feature fresh vegetables, grown in a large back room and sold in the front of the market.

The Farmers’ Market starts up outside the building on Friday, April 28, with the grand opening taking place on the Friday and Saturday.

Westgate is located at 2090 10th Ave SW, right off the Trans-Canada Highway.

For more information on leasing opportunities, email Karen@thehandmadeshoppe.com

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