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One cone at a time: New Glasgow Farmer’s Market has a sweet solution for $620,000 upgrade

Marketgoes que up for ice-cream at the New Glasgow Farmer's Market. All money raised goes back to the Farmer's Market which is currently saving to replace the dome structure with a big red barn.
Marketgoes que up for ice-cream at the New Glasgow Farmer's Market. All money raised goes back to the Farmer's Market which is currently saving to replace the dome structure with a big red barn. - Brendan Ahern
NEW GLASGOW, N.S. —

It was hard to tell whether it was the sunshine or the ice cream that had people in high spirits at the New Glasgow Farmer’s Market. After all, May 25 was the first sunny Saturday that market goers have enjoyed all year.

That said, Kristi Russel was pretty sure that it was the ice cream.

At least for the kids.

“The great thing about kids is they like ice cream even when it’s cold and rainy out,” said Russel.

She’d know all about it, since this is the second week in a row that ice cream has been sold out of a kiosk in the dome.

It’s being sold to help the dome to move over and make way for a big red barn.

“All the proceeds go back to the operations of the market, and everything else we’re saving to raise the barn.”

The barn, Russel told The News, will be located exactly where the dome is today and it will allow the market to host all of its vendors year-round.

During the winter months water in the dome structure is turned off, and so food vendors must use hand wash basins, and in the months of Jan. and Feb. it gets closed altogether.

A bright day for the farmer's market on May 25.

A bright day for the farmer's market on May 25.

“Then I don’t have enough room in the other building to host all the vendors, who want to attend,” said Russell who has had to rotate vendors on a weekly basis rather than host them each week, every week.

“If I won the lottery tomorrow, I’d build this barn so it’d be ready for the winter.”

“That will allow our farmers to come all year round and make sure they have a market place in the winter that can support them and feed the community” she said.

The cost for the Barn is currently budgeted at $620,000. So far, Russell says that they’ve raised between $1200 and $1500.

“If I won the lottery tomorrow, I’d build this barn so it’d be ready for the winter.”

Russell says that they’re looking to develop a corporate sponsorship program which would allow local businesses to invest.

“The barn would be heated and insulated,” Russell said. “We’ll reuse all the electrical and plumbing, and we’ll have an eating space and look into hosting workshops.”

As for the design, a big red barn was an obvious choice.

“It connects rural to urban, which is what a farmer’s market does. Connecting farmers with the people who purchase, giving fresh local food and food security.”

But, Russell says that it’s also more than just a place to buy groceries.

“It will continue to be a social gathering place in the winter when people really need it.”

In the mean time, Russell and a group of dedicated volunteers are chipping away at the $620,000 goal, one cone at a time.

“Moon mist and cotton candy are popular with the kids. We’ve also had a lot of requests for strawberry, so on our next order we’ll have it.”

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