This Saturday marks the fourth annual winter wonderland craft market for local entrepreneurs Steve and Shannon Root.
This one-day shopping extravaganza at Invermere’s Columbia Valley Centre takes place Saturday, November 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. There will be tasty food for sale, live music provided by Emily Grace Rawbon, and plenty of shopping for everyone in the family.
This year’s Winter Wonderland Market includes: chocolate, baked goods, gluten free, spice blends, everything pickled, mustards, honey, jewelry, children’s items, toys, doll clothes, fine gems, alabaster, ukuleles and guitars, woodworks, candles and soap, glassworks, tasty spirits, a leatherworker, ceramic pottery, reflexology and essential oils, knit artisans, bird and bat-houses, wood signs, cards and so much more, lists Ms. Root.
The Roots do the summer market season every year for their three separate business ventures: a baby and children’s sewing line called Baby Root Designs, honey and bee-related products from Weaver’s Bee Co., and freshly-grown fruits and vegetables.
Ms. Root grew up learning the family honeybee business. She got her first bee suit when she was five years old, learning in her father’s footsteps how to raise and care for honeybees. She would spend hours with the hive, but would charge her dad $10 every time she was stung.
“So when I got stung, it hurt him too,” she says with a smile.
Now a parent of three, Ms. Root has bee suits for her own kids so they can learn all about honey too.
“It’s pretty amazing to have the kids so hands-on,” she says.
Weaver’s Bee Co. sells more than seven different varieties of honey, such as blueberry, blackberry, creamed, and raspberry honey. They will have samples of all their varieties at the market so shoppers can try them side-by-side.
Mr. Root will have home-cooked menu items for sale at the market too. Ms. Root says he had worked as an executive chef in the Valley for about 10 years, but left all that behind to be more hands-on at home.
“He left all that behind so that we could do this journey together, which is both exciting and terrifying, and be self-employed (instead),” she says.
The Winter Wonderland Market came about because the couple wanted an event that could incorporate their own offerings as well as bring in a whole range of other vendors to suit every taste and style of shopper. The vendors all put a lot of effort into making their products, Ms. Root says, and urges shoppers to come down and support all of them this Saturday.
“Handmade is better. Period. And you can meet the person that’s making what you’re buying. That’s a pretty special connection,” says Ms. Root. “When you’re purchasing that thing, you’re touching that person’s life. And they’re literally doing a happy dance when you walk away.”