188th DTES Street Market at Pigeon Park in Vancouver Downtown Eastside (DTES) on Sun Jan 12, 2014
188th DTES Street Market and SECOND Street Market of 2014
Roland Clarke, Coordinator of the DTES Street Market says:
It was a typical rainy Vancouver winter day.
At 8:30am we had only two or three vendors arriving, and we almost thought that the market might not happen. I reassured the volunteers that once we had some tents up, the vendors and customers would come… and they did.
By noon we had about 60 vendors, which is not bad considering the conditions. Only the vendors that secured a tent could stay, and we had the most interest in our tables that I have seen in months.
Events of Note:
We had no injuries during the day, and virtually no one even needed the first aid kits.
We did get a visit from the vendor that we barred from the market last week, Fred. At about 3pm he was seen walking through the market and we did exactly what we rehearsed the day before at our job meeting.
About 7 or 8 volunteers gathered together and confronted him all at once. Richard was at the head of the group and had a copy of the letter that we gave him last week, and also the poster that we made barring him from the market. Despite some early protests, he left willingly. It was a clear triumph for the strength and resolve of the volunteers that we could handle this situation smoothly and without any physical violence.
There was also a curious thing that happened throughout the day that I couldn’t help noticing.
Many of the normal ‘misbehaving’ or ‘selling out of a bag’ vendors were stopped by volunteers as normal and escorted out of the park. The vendors started setting up camp on the corner of Hastings and Carrall St., right near the Interurban gallery. They refused to move any further because they claimed that this was just a normal side walk. A quick conference among volunteers determined that they were right, and we just let them stay there. One vendor was even displaying meats openly on the side walk until the police came and chased him away.
This is another example in my mind of the market working perfectly. The stolen goods that are sold up and down Hastings are finally getting stopped at the border of our little market.
We purchased a small (1kW) generator at the market to supplement our solar powered off-grid system at 62 East Hastings.