COVID-19 Market changes

During COVID-19, the Thunder Bay Country Market has made a number of changes to ensure the safety of our vendors and customers:

  • we are requiring all customers must use hand sanitizer upon entering
  • all customers and vendors are required to wear masks as per the Thunder Bay District Health Unit directive
  • we have restructured the downstairs layout to have very wide aisles, with more room for social distancing and less vendors per space. To switch sides of the layout, use the front or back foyer.
  • Upstairs already has wide aisles, however we remind everyone to respect social distancing
  • the majority of downstairs booths have plexiglass installed in front for vendor and customer safety
  • We have added appropriately distanced tables upstairs to our dining room and reopened the downstairs dining room with minimal tables on August 29. We also have more outdoor picnic tables for the remainder of the outdoor season.
  • Please DO NOT attend Market if you are feeling unwell, or have any of the potential COVID symptoms (see list from TBDHU)
Review the Market's Mandatory Mask Policy

All customers will be required to wear a mask to attend the Market, as per the direction of the Thunder Bay District Health Unit.

For more information about the directive, please see the Health Unit’s information page

This page is updated frequently to reflect the continual changes the Market is making to be adaptive to the changing environment that COVID presents.

Please refer back regularly.

Last updated: Friday, September 15, 2020

Frequently Asked Questions

Are all vendors accepting payment by cards?

The majority of vendors now have tap or debit/credit options available.
However, some of our vendors are still cash-based.

There are also 2 ATMs on site – 1 in the back foyer and 1 in the front foyer.
Note there is a $3 charge to use the ATMs.
Revenue from the ATMs helps support Market operations.

Can I bring my own bags? What about returning bottles and jars?

Yes, we continue to encourage the use of your own bags. The vendor will place your items next to the plexiglass and you can put it in your own bag.

You may continue to return bottles from Slate River Dairy and jam jars to the relevant jam makers (H&P Jams, A Little of This, Head Acre Farms) and honey jars to Bears, Bees & Honey as well as maple syrup bottles to Nor’Wester Maple Co.

As Kumbaya Kombucha has closed their business, we can no longer accept those bottles back, however they may be eligible for Beer Store returns.

We cannot currently accept egg cartons back.

How has the layout changed?

This is a continually evolving process as we try to adapt to the “new normal”.

We have hung plexiglass barriers in front of each downstairs booth. Upstairs booths have the choice of plexiglass barriers or wearing masks full-time.

The downstairs booths have been rearranged for less contact between vendors (more space per booth) and more space for customers to social distance.

The Market Store has now moved into the main downstairs area for more space.

Both the upstairs and downstairs dining rooms are opened, but with limited capacity. We are also doing contact tracing as mandated by the Thunder Bay District Health Unit. Those that sit in the dining room will be asked for contact details, which will be given to the Health Unit only if we are informed that someone with COVID attended the Market and may have put others at risk.

There is also a picnic table area behind the building for many seating options.

All returning upstairs vendors have now returned. We are recruiting new vendors to fill the remaining empty spaces.

For a list of vendors see Our Vendors

Will the Online Market Store return?

The Online Store was an important pivot during the initial crisis, which allowed the Market and the majority of our vendors to continue to sell directly to customers. We are so pleased with the strong support we received from orders each week.

As the Market reopened and as Ontario moved into Phase 3, the demand for the Online Store was no longer there. While we understand some customers are not comfortable returning, at this time we do not have an online option.

We encourage you to connect directly with your favourite vendors to purchase their products (some offer home delivery) or to shop through Superior Seasons, run by Belluz Farms, which has a wide selection of our vendors’ products available on their site. They offer local delivery as well as contactless pickup.

We are working to figure out potential opportunities for online sales and will keep our customers posted.