Cornering the market

With a brilliant blue sky and the lush green grass of Evergreen Park as her backdrop, Judy Rice spun a rainbow of fleece into yarn. As her foot pressed on her spinning wheel, shoppers shuffled by to look at what she and other artists had created.

For the past six weeks Cafe Destino has been home to the Bremerton Open Air Market 4-9 p.m. every Wednesday. It started with nine vendors and has since grown to about 20. The market has room for about 30 growers, beaders, painters, weavers and such.

“I hope to meet some folks interested in doing this,” Rice said as she fed a continuous, colorful wisp into the wheel.

Wednesday was Rice’s first appearance at the Open Air Market. She typically shows her scarves and rugs in galleries, but thought the market would help her find members for the Kitsap Weavers of which she is president.

Other vendors such as Tina Fox, who also happens to work at Cafe Destino, have seen the market bloom.

“It’s been steadily great. The vendors seem to have a good time,” she said.

Fox, who sells her Lavender Moon bath soaps is a member of the Port Orchard Farmers Market. Several of the vendors from there have joined the Open Air Market that has been called a “more laid back” version of the one to the south.

Everyone who sells items at the market must make the item. This was something Kate Puls, the market’s manager, insisted on.

“It creates integrity in the market space. This is not just someone taking money, it is someone who knows something,” Puls said.

This is the first farmers’ market venue in downtown Bremerton in a long time, some say 40 years.

“We’re bringing the artists back out to the people where they can be seen,” Puls said. This, she hopes will lead to more people learning an art or skill.

Space is also available for non-profit groups. For information call (360) 782-0711.

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