April 14, 2015 - 2:27 PM
VERNON - A Friday night market in downtown Vernon will go ahead this summer, but there’s still some unease among city councillors about the event.
Coun. Catherine Lord says she’s been contacted by several businesses, some anonymously, wishing to express their concerns about the market.
“We’ve been getting some really upset people with it because it is impacting their business, even onto the point of tears,” Lord said at a council meeting Monday, April 13. “To me, getting those concerns is very upsetting.”
At council’s March 23 meeting, the Downtown Vernon Association was asked to find out how many merchants are in favour of the market. The request came after Coun. Lord brought forth a number of issues local businesses have with the event. Executive director Lara Konkin brought those findings back to council this week, citing 93 per cent in favour of the evening market on 30 Avenue.
Several local business owners accompanied Konkin to speak about their positive experiences with the market. They said it adds vibrancy to downtown Vernon and attracts customers who don’t ordinarily shop there.
Council ultimately endorsed the market for this year. It will run Friday evenings from June 12 to Sept. 18 and welcome vendors to set up booths in blocks of 30 Avenue closed to vehicle traffic.
But before supporting the market again in 2016, council has decided to conduct a blind survey of merchants.
“One of the things that concerns me is there are some people who are confidentially coming to us rather than going to the Downtown Vernon Association and saying this is my concern,” Lord said. “I’m just saying, there’s a problem out there, and you really need to take a look at it and address it.”
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015