Duelling demos to be held Saturday pro-and-con the Wild Flight Farm controversy

By David F. Rooney

The controversy over Wild Flight Farm’s exclusion from the Revelstoke Farm & Craft Market has reached the stage where duelling pro-and-con demonstrations have been organized for this Saturday, April 8.

Both demonstrations are set to be held at the Community Centre starting at 10 am.

The first demo, is in support of the Revelstoke Farm & Craft Market directors who have been under fire since The Current broke the story about their decision to exclude Wild Flight Farm from this year’s summer market.

The demonstration is being organized by Rose Gentles. It is timed to coincide with the Farm & Craft Market’s Annual General Meeting, which is also to be held at the Community Centre, starting st 10;30 am.

“Please come show your support for the board of directors who have faced many personal attacks in the past weeks,” Gentles said in a post on the Facebook page created to support the Farm & Craft Market.

“The key foundation of a farmers’ market is for farmers to sell produce that they have gown on their farms, thus the ‘make, bake, grow’ philosophy adopted by the BC Farmers Market Association. As stated in the BCFMA vendor guidelines ‘re-selling undermines the ideals of a farmers’ market’. Let’s let our progressive Revelstoke Farm & Craft Market board know that we support their decision in continuing to provide a diverse, ethical, honest Revelstoke Farmers Market!”

The other demo is a protest against the board’s decision to exclude Wild Flight Farm and its owners, Hermann and Louise Bruns. Organized by Hailey Ross, Anne Keller and Christina Hartley they they said in a post on their Facebook page that it is intended to make an impression on Farm & Craft Market members.

“It has been stated that this is a ‘closed meeting,’ they said, “however we invite you to join us outside the meeting doors to demonstrate our disappointment in the undemocratic decisions that have been made. We want to make the current board and market members aware of the community they serve and our dismay at their rejection of Wild Flight Farm’s market membership.”

This is the first time that two demos, each espousing an opposing point of view, have been held in the same place at the same time. This is an issue that has excited some people whose tempers could get heated at these duelling demos.

“We will be setting up near the paddlewheel,” Rose Gentles said Sunday evenng. “This will be the best location to show the RFCM board and members and the public that we support the RFCM.
I will be informing all persons present that this is to be a peaceful demonstration. If they are to lose their tempers and act in an unprofessional manner, they will be solely responsible for their behaviour. We are not there to create conflict, we are there to show support.”