The Whittlesea Monday Market reopened on Monday.

WHITTLESEA Monday Market reopened yesterday as Victoria continues to return to COVID-normal life.

Like so many businesses, Whittlesea Monday Market has had a tough year in 2020.

The market is a true community market, operated by a manager and volunteers on behalf of a volunteer committee – The Whittlesea Showgrounds and Recreation Reserve’s Committee of Management.

Committee president Graeme Hunter said organisers were thrilled to have the market up and running again after a long hiatus.

“Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, we have only been open for 16 markets so far this year,” he said.

“We are a community market and at all times, we put the health and safety of our shoppers, stallholders, volunteers and local community first; we even cancelled our huge public holiday markets.

“Sadly, we made the difficult decision to not open on the Monday before the Melbourne Cup, as social distancing would have been impossible with the big crowds and it would have been irresponsible for public safety.”

Mr Hunter said it was a great time of year for the market to reopen, with a huge variety of stalls in an open-air setting taking advantage of improving weather.

Among the goods on offer at the market are quality fresh fruit and vegetables, fresh seafood, artisan breads, honey, eggs, deli goods, a huge range of plants, pet and stock feed, clothing, footwear, work wear, tools, household cleaning products, toys, collectibles, bric-a-brac and more.

Attendees can also purchase a unique gift – something different from what they might find at a mainstream shopping centre.

With Christmas around the corner, Whittlesea Monday Market has gift options for children, mum, dad, grandparents, friends, teachers or even an elderly aunt.

Mr Hunter said organisers were looking forward to welcoming everybody back.

“We have our permanent stallholders and so many regular shoppers – we are like a family,” he said.

“The proceeds we derive from the market are reinvested into the showgrounds and recreation reserves in the Whittlesea township.

“Our volunteers have been amazing, working tirelessly during COVID, assisting in the upkeep of all urgent and regular maintenance.

“So many people have been enjoying the opportunity to get out and use our great parks for exercise.

“These grounds and facilities have still needed to be maintained, which has been challenging without the income from the market.

“Even though we are a not-for-profit, we were unable to receive any of the financial support for businesses from the federal or Victorian government for COVID.”

Mr Hunter called for people to get behind and support a market that operates to provide a great service to the Whittlesea community.

Whittlesea Monday Market is held every Monday from 8am to 1pm. Anyone with questions about stalls or shopping at the markets can call 0428 821 644.