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Salt Spring Apple FestivalGo to Slide Show

Oh, and I got engaged


Orange Luffa Soaps
Salt Spring Island is one of those special places that contributes to the lower mainland being a great place to live.  I've been to Salt Spring a number of times before - We once rented a vacation home for a May Long Weekend,  I've visited by Kayak, and I've been to a B&B here before.

Variety Of Soaps

Salt Spring has a number of highlights, one of them is the farmers market on Saturday mornings.  Farmers Markets have been gaining popularity all over the province and can be found on many of the Gulf Islands, but Salt Spring Market is the most prominent of them.   This markets has a firm requirement that everything is produced locally and the people you see in the booths you will see around the island later on in a weekend.

Various BeetsVarious PeppersVarious Tomatoes

Helen And I On Mount Maxwell
This trip has a special reason - I had a ring in my pocket and a question on my mind.  After a bit of yuppie touring (I was quite impressed with the Salt Spring Vineyard) we arrived at the top of Mount Maxwell.  I was a little surprised by how busy it was (I was hoping for a quite space) but thankfully everyone was walking back to the parking lot as we walked up.  So with the hill top free, after a minute of taking in the view, I got down on one knee and asked Helen is she would marry me.  She said yes.

It took me a few moments to remember it is my job to put the ring on the finger.


The Apple Festival

Canadian Butter Apples
Apparently, this is the 8th Annual Apple Festival on Salt Spring Island.  Apparently, around the previous turn of the century (like 1905), before there was good transportation to the Okanagan, Salt Spring was the major agricultural supplier to Victoria and the Lower Mainland. 

High Explosive ApplesRed Apples In Box
 
Apples Going Getting Ground Up
Scattered around the island are more than a dozen orchards - some of which were once large commercial farms.  Now the farms concentrate on diversity (the number of varietals shown was staggering) and their environmental footprint.  Most of the farms are organic and many of the farms have additional constraints on irrigation and land use.  While apples were for sale during the apple festival (generally between $1.50 and $2 a pound), nothing appeared to be moving in commercial quantities.


After purchasing our tickets in Ganges, the first farm we visited was Purdy-Inglin Farm.  This farm was settled in 1884 and is still operated by family.  They produced some nice apples, but they also had a demonstration of a juicer made at turn of the century.  It's a pretty simple machine - apples get torn apart by a studded wheel and the shreds land in a basket below.  The shreds are then pressed and the juice flows down the ramp into a tub.  The contents of the tub are then filtered and finally put in bottles.  It was a real pleasure to see the family work the profits of their farm.

Apples Going In HopperApples Being PressedJuice Running Into PanApple Juice Funneled Into Container
 
We poked around a few more locations  - Moonstruck Organic Cheese and the The Beddis Castle - but were were getting hungry so we decided to go to The Bread Lady.  She has a wood burning bread oven and makes a lot of very nice treats.

Sticky BunsLoaves Ready For The Oven
Helen had a pork sandwich (fresh off the grill) and in classic island fashion, there was a vegetarian option. 

Focaccia
 

We visited the nearby Apple Luscious Orchard and saw our first large scale tasting.   This orchard has hundreds of trees and looks like they are only weeks away from being completely overrun by the local flora. 

Tasting Table At FarmApple Hanging On Tree

Our final stop before our appointment with the ferry was the Bright Farm.  This working farm was selling at least two dozen varietals.  Their orchard has hundreds of varietals (most trees are only a few years old) so in the future this farm will be producing an amazing variety of fruit.

Bunch Of Apples On TreePear On Tree


Being city kids, the chickens really made us laugh.  I believe these chickens are fed by people so when you walk through their yard, they come running to see you.   Nothing is more funny than a chicken following you.

Chicken By Old Hen HouseChicken With Old TruckChicken Looking Me UpChickens Coming To Say Hi
 
Great weekend had!
 


Chicken Looking Me Up
Tags: chicken, farm animal, gulf island
Various Peppers
Tags: gulf island, market, peppers, produce
Chicken By Old Hen House
Tags: chicken, farm, gulf island
Chicken With Old Truck
Tags: chicken, farm, gulf island
Helen And I On Mount Maxwell
Person: John, Helen
Juice Running Into Pan
Tags: farm, gulf island
High Explosive Apples
Tags: produce
Apple Hanging On Tree
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Sticky Buns
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Variety Of Soaps
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Canadian Butter Apples
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Red Apples In Box
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Various Tomatoes
Tags: market, produce
Bunch Of Apples On Tree
Tags: produce
Focaccia
Tags: food porn, gulf island
Orange Luffa Soaps
Tags: gulf island, market
Apples Being Pressed
Tags: farm, gulf island
Apples Going Getting Ground Up
Tags: produce
Various Beets
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Loaves Ready For The Oven
Tags: cooking
Apples Going In Hopper
Tags: farm
Apple Juice Funneled Into Container
Tags: farm, gulf island
Pear On Tree
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Chickens Coming To Say Hi
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Tasting Table At Farm
Tags: farm, gulf island
Tags: gulf island(14), produce(10), farm(7), market(5), chicken(4), farm animal(2)
People: John(1), Helen(1)
From: John Harvey Photo > John's Overnight Page > Salt Spring Apple Festival

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