Kempenfest isn't a Shop... it's a festival held the first weekend of August (the LONG weekend), along the waterfront. Its many shops, many booths for food, and beverage.
It is also water sports...and great people watching.
If you park at one end of the waterfront and end up walking to the other end, there is a shuttle bus to take you back .
What to buy: hmmm what to buy? Paintings? Photograph? Pottery? Carvings? Toys? Clothes? Pillows? Something for yourself? Christmas gifts (if you remember where you hide them)? Did you forget to buy a hat? Sports goods? Something to eat while you walk? Native Canadian items? Soooo, you're getting it... lots of different items. Many of these artists also appear in some of the big shows in Toronto ("One of a Kind").
What to pay: anything from $ to $$$... depends upon the item, and the artisan.
We, husband and wife, paid a visit to this store that was located on west side of the Highway 12 in Brechin just after the traffic signals and Coffee Time. The two room shop was stuffed with artifacts. Many large pieces were placed outside in the yard, as well as in the front.
This shop interested us because of native artifacts and many carved pieces of wildlife that must have roamed the region.
What to buy: We bought some 1st nation artifacts like carving of a wolf pack and Indian dolls.
What to pay: For the item we bought we thought we were paying a higher than average amount. The consolation was that when we put the artifacts at home and guests asked us from where did we buy them, we were able to pridefully tell them that it was from Brechin near Orillia.
To be honest, I've only been here once, but I've been told it is pretty good as flea markets go.
Open year round, it is enclosed so that you can spend a rainy or snowy day here.
Lots and lots of vendors. Quite the variety of items to buy.
What to buy: Well what are you looking for? You'll probably find it here. I think the only thing I bought though were books. I know that I saw a lot of people carrying more than just books.
What to pay: $-$$$ or nothing at all
Hempola Valley Farms is a unique place to spend 30 minutes to an hour, located on the outskirts of Barrie, Ontario. Famous for bringing the public good food and education about industrial hemp (not marijuana), they are certainly helping to put Barrie on the map.
Be sure to check their website for details and dates of when the next Hemp Farm Festival is, where vendors and educators gather to promote the amazing healing and useful properties of hemp!
Enjoy free, self-guided tours of their hemp field (seasonal) and lavish in the free food sampling. (The Hemp Brownies are sooo yummy!) The owners house is unique from the outside as well - this is eco living at its best.
What to buy: Hemp Brownies, Salad Dressings, Pancake Mix, Hemp Flour, and more are offerred for sale. If you can only afford one item, I recommend the easy-to-make batch of chocolately hemp brownies. Tastes good, a little bit more expensive ($6), but good for you and a terrific conversation starter.
What to pay: Since you're buying organic items it is always a little bit more expensive.
Knitter's Bazaar is, in my opinion, the only serious yarn shop in Barrie. Sure you can buy some yarn at Michael's or Lewiscraft, but you're not going find anywhere else in Barrie with the degree of selection and expertise you'll get at Knitters Bazaar.
What to buy: A full range of knitting and crochet equipment and materials, plus some tapestry and cross stitch supplies. If you suddenly need to satisfy your yen for learning to knit, the also hold classes and workshops
What to pay: The prices at Knitters Bazaar are very competitive.
Huronia region is known for its home based businesses. A list of our favorites and highly recommended is as follows:
Hillsdale Pottery at Hilsdale 835-2925 for fine studio pottery in arich variety of colors.
John Poole Antiques at Craighurst 726-2525 for Canadian antiques regularly featured in Canadian Living magazine.
Woodside Pottery at Craighurst 728-3691 for works of a local artisan working at a studio at his home.
Dave Beckett Studio Gallery at Orilla 325-6809 for original Canadian paintings and limited edition prints.
Rama Moccasin & Craftshop at Rama 325-5041 for native crafts, jewelery and clothing.
The Artisan's Gallery at Severn Bridge 705-689-6121 for original metal designs.
However, we had our cart full of antique gifts for our friends and family members in Toronto, Illinois, and United Arab Emirates at:
400 Antiques Mall on Highway 400 near Barrie.
What to buy: Antiques, pieces of decoration, native art and jewelery.
What to pay: Our total bill ran into about Canadian 500 dollars, not bad at all for comparative price at duty free United Arab Emirates.