Salt Spring Apple Festival
Oh, and I got engaged
Salt Spring has a number of highlights, one of
them is the farmers
market on Saturday mornings. Farmers Markets have been
gaining popularity all over the province and can be found on many of
the Gulf Islands, but Salt Spring Market is the most prominent of
them. This markets has a firm requirement that
everything is produced locally and the people you see in the booths you
will see around the island later on in a weekend.
trip has a special reason - I had a ring
pocket and a question on my mind. After a bit of yuppie touring
(I was quite impressed with the Salt Spring Vineyard) we arrived at the
top of Mount Maxwell. I was a little surprised by how busy it was
(I was hoping for a quite space) but thankfully everyone was walking
back to the parking lot as we walked up. So with the hill top
free, after a minute of taking in the view, I got down on one knee and
asked Helen is she would marry me. She said yes.
It took me a few moments to remember it is my job to put the ring on
The Apple Festival
this is the 8th Annual Apple Festival on Salt Spring
Island. Apparently, around the previous turn of the century (like
1905), before there was good transportation to the Okanagan, Salt
Spring was the major agricultural supplier to Victoria and the Lower
Scattered around the island
are more than a dozen
orchards - some of which were once large commercial farms. Now
farms concentrate on diversity (the number of varietals shown was
staggering) and their environmental footprint. Most of the farms
are organic and many of the farms have additional constraints on
irrigation and land use. While apples were for sale during the
apple festival (generally between $1.50 and $2 a pound), nothing
appeared to be moving in commercial quantities.
After purchasing our tickets in Ganges, the first farm we visited was
Purdy-Inglin Farm. This farm was settled in 1884 and is still
operated by family. They produced some nice apples, but they also
had a demonstration of a juicer made at turn of the
century. It's a pretty simple machine - apples get torn apart by
a studded wheel and the shreds land in a basket below. The shreds
are then pressed and the juice flows down the ramp into a tub.
contents of the tub are then filtered and finally put in bottles.
It was a real pleasure to see the family work the profits of their farm.
We poked around a few more locations - Moonstruck Organic Cheese
and the The Beddis Castle - but were were getting hungry so we decided
to go to The Bread Lady. She has a wood burning bread oven and
makes a lot of very nice treats.
Helen had a pork sandwich (fresh off the
grill) and in
classic island fashion, there was a vegetarian option.
We visited the nearby Apple Luscious Orchard and saw our first large
scale tasting. This orchard has hundreds of trees and looks
like they are only weeks away from being completely overrun by the local
Our final stop before our appointment with the ferry was the Bright
Farm. This working farm was selling at least two dozen
varietals. Their orchard has hundreds of varietals (most trees
are only a few years old) so in the future this farm will be producing
an amazing variety of fruit.
Being city kids, the chickens really made us laugh. I believe
these chickens are fed by people so when you walk through their yard,
they come running to see you. Nothing is more funny than a
chicken following you.
Great weekend had!
Tags: gulf island(14), produce(10), farm(7), apple(6), market(5), chicken(4)
People: John(1), Helen(1)
From: John Harvey Photo > John's Overnight Page > Salt Spring Apple Festival
Last Modified Tuesday, June 9th, 2009 at 01:26:22 Edit
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