Inuvik's annual Arctic market will start on time during National Indigenous People's Day weekend
Location moving to Midnight Sun Complex’s gym parking lot
Inuvik's annual summer Arctic market will be starting during National Indigenous People's Day weekend, like it does every year.
The first weekly market will start on June 20, but market goers will be heading to a slightly different location and following a different set of rules.
Farmers' markets are allowed under strict conditions as part of the territorial government's first phase of easing its COVID-19 restrictions.
Town officials will be making sure they are following all the requirements, including maintaining proper physical distancing, as well as limiting the market to 25 people at a time, in line with the territory's requirements for outdoor gatherings.
Location moved due to construction
"Instead of being in Chief Jim Koe Park like right in the middle of the park by the stage, this summer what will happen we'll be over in the parking lot by the gym at the MSC [Midnight Sun Complex], right across from the youth centre," said Natasha Kulikowski, mayor of Inuvik "That's a nice levelled space where we can hold tents up and tables to hold the market this year."
The town is giving Chief Jim Koe Park a facelift this summer by installing a new stage, bleachers and covering.
During June, the area will be a construction zone until it's completed so the town needed to find a new area for the market.
The winter market season was cut short because of COVID-19 back in March, but Kulikowski is looking forward to the summer season.
"We are just excited now to start to make plans to move forward," Kulikowski said. "As much as we've set the date already there is still a lot of meetings and planning that has to happen in order for us to host a safe market for people to attend."
As the town starts to make new plans that adhere to the guidelines set in Phase 1, they are looking at reopening and restarting other town-operated facilities.
Kulikowski said they are reviewing everything and asking the government for clarity on different rules for places like gyms.
She said the next priority for the town is to reopen the playgrounds.
"Right now our public works crew is researching and trying to find the best way for Inuvik to reopen the parks and then maintain that disinfection protocol that the [Northwest Territories government] is looking for," Kulikowski said.
"That's at the forefront right now … so that the kids can [go] back and play in the parks."