As long as the weather outside isn’t frightful, things down on the pier will be delightful on Saturday, December 4, as the inaugural Cheer on the Pier market gathers vendors, musicians and community groups to help start the holiday season.
“We’re looking forward to bringing the community together, especially at this time of year,” says Alexandra Young, community development officer for the City of Powell River. “There will be something for everyone: artisans to help you with your Christmas shopping, musicians to entertain you, food vendors to stave off your hunger pangs, and an outdoor beer garden where you can gather with friends.”
Cheer on the Pier is a natural extension of the city’s Thursday Night Markets, which ran for seven weeks over the summer.
“Even in the middle of summer, a lot of the vendors and attendees were asking us, what are you going to do for Christmas?” says Alexandra. “We have a lot of returning vendors from the Thursday Night Markets, but we also have new vendors, as well as community businesses and organizations.”
For example, Townsite Brewing will run the beer garden on the pier, which will be lit up with Christmas lights for the first time that evening.
“The brewery is planning something very cozy,” says Alexandra. “I’m looking forward to seeing what they set up.”
Musicians will take to the Spirit Stage at the end of the pier to entertain people inside and outside the beer garden.
“Two of the musicians are Renelle Wilkene and her son Dawson Jaxn, who are known in town for their fantastic music,” says Alexandra. “And if you’re brave enough, Party Rock Recordings will have a karaoke booth so you can perform yourself.”
The Christmas Cheer Committee and the Salvation Army will also be in attendance, collecting donations and providing information on the services they offer.
“The Salvation Army will bring their new truck, and will be serving free hotdogs and hot chocolate to thank people for their support,” says Alexandra. “There will also be food vendors, so if you’ve missed mini donuts, want some cupcakes, or need a mini-charcuterie cup, we’ve got you covered.”
No market would be complete without vendors, and according to Alexandra, Cheer on the Pier will be a great place to shop for loved ones without having to worry about the supply chain breaking down.
“Some of the usual markets still aren’t running this year, so Cheer on the Pier helps fill that gap,” she says. “It provides an opportunity for people to support local artisans and businesses, which has a huge economic impact. The seven Thursday Night Markets in the summer, for example, injected between $50,000 and $70,000 into the local economy.”
Community support made the Thursday Night Markets successful, and Alexandra knows Powell River residents will make Cheer on the Pier equally so.
“I started in this position in May, and it’s been so rewarding to see how the community has come together to support events that directly impact their neighbours,” she says. “I was born here, and while I love being a part of helping our community thrive, it wouldn’t happen without everyone, from vendors to community organizations to the people who attend, coming together and saying, this is how we want Powell River to be.”
Cheer on the Pier, at Westview Ferry Terminal, will follow the Santa Claus Parade, which takes place from 2 to 4 pm on Saturday, December 4. The parade runs along Marine Avenue between Duncan and Alberni streets.
Once the parade is finished, spectators are invited down to the pier for the start of the market, which then runs until 8 pm and is open to everyone.