Come Celebrate the harvest at James Bay Market!
By Jessica Duncan
September 9 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Corner of Menzies and Superior
When I was a kid, one of my favourite books was Stone Soup. Later, when I became a teacher, I read this book to every single class I taught. For those of you who have not yet had the pleasure of reading this book, it is an old tale of three hungry, war-weary, French soldiers who wander into a village looking for food and lodgings. The villagers are frightened and pretend they have no food. The clever soldiers call the villagers to the square and announce that since there is no food to be shared, they will make a pot of stone soup for everyone. They ask for a cauldron and some sticks for a fire – easy enough to produce. Someone brings water, then the soldiers add a large stone to the pot. They spin an impressive tale of how they made this very soup for the king. Stirring the pot, they ooh and ahh, and exclaim that, while the soup is lovely, a little salt wouldn’t go amiss. A villager fetches them some salt. Then pepper. Delicious, but would be even better with a shred of cabbage. Cabbage miraculously appears from a cellar. Then carrots. Beef and barley. A communal table is set. Bread appears from deep within a villager’s cupboard, as does wine. Musicians pull out their instruments and a grand feast is had by all.
It is a beautiful story with a very important message of sharing with and caring for one’s community. It is a story of delicious food. It is a story of joy and friendship overcoming isolation and sadness. It is a harvest story.
I am often reminded of this story around this time of year, especially when I think about the James Bay Market. The volunteers who form the committee work tirelessly to unite the James Bay community, to bring the finest local food to your neighbourhood, to create joy and friendship at the normally unassuming corner of Superior and Menzies. For the 23rd season, the James Bay Market Society is celebrating the local harvest in your neighbourhood on September 9th. You are invited to come enjoy the region’s bounty with friends and neighbours. Indulge in a buttery ear of Saanich grown corn or a slice of freshly baked pie, washed down with a cup of The Mustard Seed’s freshly roasted coffee while listening to live music. You will also be able to purchase The Mustard Seed coffee for $16.00 per pound, with all proceeds going directly to The Mustard Seed. Fresh berries abound as do many other fruits and vegetables in September, so be prepared fill your bags.
The JBM Society does not limit itself to running the Saturday market, but is always finding new ways to contribute to the wider community. This year they will be holding a 50/50 draw at the Market Harvest Day to raise funds for the James Bay Community School Morning Snack Program. In the true spirit of the Stone Soup story, the JBM Society believes that good food should be made available to everyone.
This year’s Market Harvest Day is definitely one to mark in your calendar. To add to the festivities and merriment, there will be a children’s tent with special harvest themed crafts. There will be free potted plants, grown and potted by our local farmer, Luke Borisenko of the Art Farm for every child to take home. Marilyn Soames with her popular chickens that children can pet and touch will be in attendance 10:30 to 2 pm, so be sure to bring your camera to take pictures. If you prefer a commemorative photo sans poultry, there will be photo booth for children and adults at no charge. A good time is guaranteed. See you at the James Bay Community Market on September 9th from 9 am to 3 pm at the Corner of Menzies and Superior.