The earliest event of the market year is Seedy Saturday (Tribute to Seeds in Covid years).
The first Seedy Saturday in Kamloops was held in 2009 by the Friends of the New Victory Gardens to promote seed saving and growing food. A few years later it became an event jointly hosted by Friends of NVG and the Thompson Shuswap Master Gardeners in an effort to improve the local supply of seeds via a seed sanctuary. It was organized by them for a few more years before it was passed on to Daniela Basile of SSOL Gardens. Daniela approached the Kamloops Farmers’ Market about hosting it as a special event in the early spring, and it has been a jointly held event since then. In 2022 Daniela is handing over the organization to the Farmers’ Market staff so she can enjoy a well earned retirement.
The Seedy Saturday event brings together interested gardeners and local BC seed growers, community groups like The Kamloops Food Policy Council, FarmFolk CityFolk, Seeds of Diversity, local suppliers of gardening supplies, including Jora Composters, along with many regular market vendors including farmers, bakers and other food makers from our region.
In 2020 and 2021 it was held as a special Indoor Winter Market in March at the Purity Feed Greenhouse (471 Okanagan Way, Tk’emlups te Secwepemc).
The 2023 Seedy Saturday was held at a new location at the Mount Paul Community Food Centre on Saturday March 11th, from 10 AM to 3 PM.
New in 2022 the Pollinator Festival, is an annual community celebration of the important role pollinators play in the health and well-being of our ecosystem. It is a community event inviting participation from the general public, businesses, and non-profit communities.
Pollinators are very important to farmers, gardeners, and ecosystems, therefore their well-being is important to us as well. Most people think of honey bees when pollinators are mentioned, but they also include native bees like bumble bees, mason bees, and more, as well as butterflies, moths, flies, wasps, beetles, birds, and bats (although not in Canada).
The 2023 Pollinator Festival is scheduled to happen from May 13th to 20th. In the meantime check out the resources below to learn more about fabulous pollinators.
Follow our social media pages for details about the festival for check back to this page for more information.
2023 Festival Schedule
At the Big Little Science Centre (458 Seymour Street - this is walking distance from the Market) Make a Mason Bee Bracelet pollinator activity for guests, included with standard entry fee / membership. From 10:00am to 4:00pm everyone is welcome to learn about Mason Bees. Make a bracelet that tells the story of a Mason Bee’s life. Learning about Mason Bees is fun for everyone. This activity is best for children up to 10 years old.
At Market (200 block St Paul Street & Stuart Wood Schoolyard):
Kamloops Makerspace is attending market with a hands on activity.
Thompson-Shuswap Master Gardeners will host a children’s craft, displays of local native bees, information on creating pollinator friendly gardens, and a limited supply of free pollinator friendly seeds.
Thompson Watershed Coalition will have information about the effects of pesticide use our in the ecosystems.
6 PM Tour of Butler Urban Farm (188 Wilson Street) and how they use native plants to attract native pollinators and beneficial insects for the farm.
As well, the Library is hosting a children's book reading (10:30 AM at the Downtown location at 100 - 465 Victoria St) and a talk for adults on about native pollinators (6 PM at the North Shore Library at 693 Tranquille Road) both by local author, artist and native pollinator enthusiast Elaine Sedgman.
May 20th - World Bee Day!
Kamloops Art Gallery is attending with their PACK (Portable Art Cycling Kit) and will have hands on art activities for kids.
Kamloops Beekeepers Club will be in attendance with a bee hive to view, beekeeping equipment, and ready to answer questions about local honey beekeeping.
Kamloops Naturalist Club will have information about native plants beneficial for native pollinators.
At 10:30 AM the Pollinator Parade starts in the schoolyard and we will do a short amble through the market area. Children under 8 years age should be accompanied by an adult or older sibling. Come dressed as your favourite pollinator and celebrate pollinators with us.
BeeCityPledge: https://beecitycanada.org/pollinator-pledge/ (individuals can pledge to protect and support pollinators)
An awesome opinion piece by a beekeeper on the importance of native pollinators like bumble bees: https://undark.org/2022/02/03/the-bumblebees-decline-shows-how-we-get-conservation-wrong/
For more information on protecting and supporting pollinators see: https://seeds.ca/pollination/
Ecoregional Planting Guide for the Thompson Okanagan Plateau: https://pollinatorpartnership.ca/assets/generalFiles/Thompson_Okanagan.Plateau.2019.pdf
Information on Bats as Pollinators (note Canada does not have any pollinator bats): https://www.batcon.org/article/the-forgotten-pollinators/
The Tomato Festival started as an event of the TRU Friends of the Garden in 2012 which was held at the Kamloops Farmers’ Market. Eventually the organization of the event was taken up by the market.
We encourage Kamloopsians to grow and enjoy locally grown tomatoes whether from your own yard, the farmers’ market, or one of the many local restaurants and cafes which support local in-season agriculture.
Tomato Festival dates for 2023 are September 9th through 16th.
We plan to have several community groups attending Kamloops Farmers’ Markets to help celebrate our local love of tomatoes and to raise awareness about local food security and food sovereignty.
We invite everyone in the Kamloops / Tk’emlups te Secwepemc area to share their love of tomatoes by using the hashtag #KamloopsTomatoFestival.
Do check our our social media and the Kamloops Tomato Festival hashtag and help us celebrate tomatoes, and local food.
2023 Tomato Festival Schedule
Sept 9th - Tomato Competition
This event is open to everyone in the community. There are four categories for the competition: largest tomato by weight, most colourful, most unusual shape, and greatest number in a single cluster. Competition rules are here.
Sept 10th - The K'wese'ltken Farmers and Artisans Market (KFAM) will have the K'wese'ltken Kitchen on site providing tomato canning demos, information and more. The KFAM runs on Sundays from 8 AM to 2 PM in the Kamloopa Powwow Arbor (345 Powwow Trail).
Sept 13th - Mount Paul Community Food Centre will be on site at the Midweek Market to talk to market attendees about their programs including community gardens, community kitchens, and more.
Sept 16th - At Market
The Thompson Shuswap Master Gardeners will be there to chat about seed saving and answer gardening questions.
Come taste tomatoes grown here in Kamloops by vendors from the market and a couple of special community groups, and then vote for the tomato you like best for the Peoples' Choice Award.
Sept 16 - Around Town
11 AM - 1 PM : The Kamloops Museum and Archives' Saturday on Seymour event will have crafts with a tomato theme.
Street Food Fare
The first Street Food Fare at the Kamloops Farmers’ Market was held in October 2019 as part of our participation in Kamloops’ Culture Days events. Due to Covid it has been on hiatus since then but we hope it will be back soon.