Thetford Center’s first local market fair on Sunday

Thetford Center’s first local market fair on Sunday

This Sunday August 8th, from 10am to 3pm, the Thetford Center Community Association (TCCA) is throwing their first local market fair on the Thetford Center Green (right across from the Village Store). The event will include a silent auction, town-wide yard sale, and a market of local vendors.

The market vendors will include local farmers, crafters, musicians, artists, food trucks, music, and more! If you would like to sign up for a vendor spot at the fair, host a yard sale, or donate an item for the silent auction—you can do so at this form: https://forms.gle/tLfGCySEiF3nREiP9 .

All proceeds from the silent auction and vendor fees will go towards upkeep of the Community Building and towards helping the local community. The Thetford Center Community Building, once Thetford Center’s second schoolhouse, was built in 1900. According to Susanna H. French, during its prime it held more students than any of Thetford’s other 15 district schoolhouses.

The Thetford Center Community Building. Photo from Thetford (Images of America) by Susanna H. French

In 1961, Thetford prepared for its shift to a single consolidated school on Thetford Hill. During this time, each district schoolhouse held one grade and what is now the Community Building held all of the town’s second graders. In 1962, the schoolhouse was purchased by the Thetford Center Community Association (TCCA).

Gail Egner—the president of the TCCA board and organizer of the event—provided some more detail on what upkeep needs to be done on the Community Building to keep it updated and available for community use. She noted, “...in particular the ramp should be replaced, and at the very least repaired and repainted. The outside of the building also needs to be painted. We would also love to replace all the older windows that are not as efficient down the road.” She also noted that TCCA has a grant that will match the donated funds if they can raise enough to complete this work on the building.

Most years, TCCA also sponsors a scholarship for a graduating Thetford senior that is interested in community. Gail explained how 2020 and Covid-19 impacted this, “...we were not able to do it this year because of a lack of funds due to not being able to rent out the building for the last year and a half. We are also carefully watching what the variant does, and anticipating that we may have to be closed again this winter if it starts spreading as quickly as they said.” If this is the case, funds raised from the town market fair will also help to pay the insurance and basic necessities to keep the building operating.

Gail credits the idea for the market fair to Jasmine Tremblay, the TCCA’s board secretary, “she really wanted to get the community together at the end of the pandemic, and support each other’s business ventures. We know a lot of businesses have changed their model to adapt during the pandemic—and new ones have started as well—so we wanted to give the community a place to showcase what they are doing and hopefully earn them some new business!” She and the TCCA would love to see this become an annual event going forward.

So mark your calendars for this upcoming event on Sunday, August 8th. Participating in and attending the market fair will help keep this historic building open and available to the community as well as supporting our local vendors and businesses.  You can also rent the Community Center for your own event by contacting the TCCA at TCCAVT@gmail.com.