CHESTERTON | The perfect weather on Saturday brought out hundreds, if not more, to the 11th annual European Market in downtown Chesterton.
Heather Ennis, executive director of the Duneland Chamber of Commerce which operates the event, said it was wonderful to be back again this year.
“This is such a community and it’s a great chance for our vendors to see each other again, getting back together after a long winter. They truly respect and care about each other, said Ennis.
This year the market boasts more vendors than in any past year, said Allyson Baughman, director of marketing for the chamber.
“We have 93 vendors out here today and we had to expand the market into Thomas Park and down 3rd Street. Last year we had 12 vendors sign up for the entire season and this year we have 44,” Baughman said.
For Michelle Zandstra, sales manager for Marilyn’s Bakery of Hobart, the market has been a success since day one when they first began participating.
“It’s local, it’s close, and everyone loves our products so we like to please them. Our most popular pies are our apple, cherry, berry berry, caramel apple,” said Zandstra who notes that seasonal pies are added as the market goes along, like rhubarb pie in a week or two.
Bea Fontecchio, manager of Bit of Swiss, a Michigan vendor that offers pastries, said that they too have been coming since day one, but it was about more than just the product.
“The people here are just wonderful. They’re very friendly and sure they love our pastries, but it just feels like family,” Fontecchio said.
Other vendors offered salsas, homemade soaps, crafts, barbecue, photography, fused glass jewelry, first-edition books, pet snacks and supplies, herbs and plants, honey, pierogi, pizzas, curries, coffee and even fresh saltwater shrimp.
The market runs from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Saturday in downtown Chesterton through the end of October.