As if the crowds in the streets and on the beaches, and the recent passage of the Day of the Dead, and all things that say, “high season is here,” weren’t enough, there was this: last week, on Friday, November 1st, Sayulita’s own homegrown Mercado del Pueblo opened for the season. This weekly gathering, where over 80 vendors of all things organic, natural, and handmade sell their wonderful stuff to the people of Sayulita–locals, expats, vacationeers, and everybody else–has become a Sayulita fixture, almost an institution, one might say, in a remarkably short time.
Why not? Great products, a wonderful , shady venue at the Casa de la Cultura in the heart of town, and an intriguing bunch of people, both buyers and sellers, make an unbeatable mix. This year, the stuff on sale has gotten even more interesting. A baker will be doing traditional Mexican breads; two new growers are joining the already impressive list of organic farmers; a family from nearby San Ignacio will be selling both organic herbs and live fruit trees, giving us all a chance to grow our own.
There will also be a man who sells bees and hives, and will offer along with his product, the knowledge required to build and maintain your own bees, thereby making it possible to make your own honey. Forgive the pun, but how sweet is that? It all adds up to a wonderful blend of established tradition and healthy innovation.
In case you weren’t aware, the vendors pay market manager (and founder) Lina Weissman a fee to set up weekly shop. These fees fund the market infrastructure, a simple thing, but they also fund the otherwise chronically underfunded Casa de la Cultura, so that this worthy local institution can provide classes and workshops of all kinds, year-round. It is a win/win situation, as they say. Market gets great venue, Casa de la Cultura gets funded.
And then there is Dos Bertos y La Musas, the utterly captivating “house” band that sits up on the stage, propitiously located in the middle of the market, complete with amphitheatre seating, and plays several sets of magical, stunning music—they know great tunes from half a dozen cultures or more, and play them all like they’ve lived them–throughout the three hours the market runs. Even if your taste runs to greasy, toxic food like they sell up the block at Oxxo, and will soon be selling across the street at Kiosko, and you have no interest in all the wonderful organic products available at the market, you should drop in just to catch a set when this band is onstage. They are simply great!!
Sayulita’s Mercado del Pueblo is open every Friday from 10 am until 1 pm, with assorted raw organic produce and food as well as prepared food ranging from vegan tamales to vegetarian and/or meat lasagna to smoked fish to sausage sandwiches; there are plenty of homegrown, handmade and healthful herbs, spices, drinks, and delicious odds and ends, mostly in the healthy, cleansing vein, available in the edibles sections. There is great organic coffee, liquid by the cup or beans by the pound. You can eat breakfast or lunch, you can also get dinner to take home for later. A talented crew of jewellers and other craftspeople offer their wares in their own section of the market. It’s a great place to eat, shop, and socialize every Friday morning, so come on down and check it out!! You’ll find the Mercado del Pueblo at the Casa de la Cultura on Avenida Palmar in the heart of downtown Sayulita.