We were told that a pancake breakfast was held from 9:00 AM to about 12 Noon and that vendors were welcome to fill the park during that time. That was about all we knew about this event so we prepared accordingly. It had been since September when George had to pack the car with our tables, canopy and cooler so it took him a couple tries first thing in the morning to get it right. I know he’ll have his system in place before long!
After picking up coffees and a bag of ice cubes, we were on our way. We pulled into Merritt at just under an hour and after George misunderstood my directions (I was driving, he was navigating) we were at the park before 8:00 AM. Another Princeton vendor was with us, travelling in a separate vehicle so we both set up next to each other. George got the canopy up quickly and helped others where he could.
Our booth was completely set up and ready to go long before the 9:00 AM start and the park slowly filled up with a few more vendors, about a dozen classic cars in a car show in front of us, and people milling about waiting for the pancake breakfast. There were lawnmower races at another part of the park and not a cloud in the sky. It was a beautiful day.
We introduced two new products at this event. One was a recipe I found intriguing and had to try to see for myself if it could be true. It’s called Carrot Cake Jam and it tastes exactly like carrot cake, minus the cream cheese. I put effort into the presentation with making sure the shredded pieces of carrot are suspended in the jar. I call that part ‘jar art’ and was very happy with the look I got from these.
Our second new item is All-Vegetable Antipasto. We have been to several venues where antipasto is popular. We have also been asked for it. However, the canning method for fish is something I want to avoid (pressure canning) so we have never explored it any further. Then about a month ago a local customer asked if I could make her some antipasto.
I dug into the recipe books and found a vegetable variety. All you need to do is add your own fish and whatever else before serving. This sounded interesting to me so I made a batch to see what it was like. George and I thought that the vegetable antipasto was pretty tasty on its own and it became a new product line. Both items sold well at Smith Pioneer Park today.
By the time the pancake breakfast had ended, a couple of vendors started packing up. Organizers came around shortly after that saying we could pack up if we wanted to so we started boxing up product. As we were doing this, a few more people entered the park and checked out the remaining vendors. We still had our samples out and George was just starting to load the car so we were still ‘in business’ at that point. We even picked up a couple of late sales as a result.
Overall, sales were a little slower than we expected, but it was also only just about 3-hours of vending. The numbers were encouraging just the same and we are now preparing for another new event on our calendar – Princeton Rodeo. We are trying to fit in some new venues before we start our weekly regular vending dates in Okanagan Falls in mid-June.