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First NK outdoor market ready for the season

PORT GAMBLE — With new faces and vendors and a bigger variety of products, the organizers of the Port Gamble Sunday Market are ready to kick off the market’s second season this weekend.

Last year, the corner of Puget Way and State Route 104 was a popular stopping point for visitors and residents passing through Port Gamble on Sundays, picking up fresh fruit, seafood and handcrafted items during the market’s inaugural year.

This year, the organizers are boasting more fresh produce, seafood and a bigger variety of products from the 25 to 30 vendors that will be gathered on the side road into town.

However, they’re still looking for those interested in selling their homemade and homegrown products, plus musicians to perform during the day.

“If someone wanted to do music, I’m extremely open to it,” said Port Gamble manager Shana Smith.

The new hours this year are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Sunday and the market will continue through the last Sunday in October.

Smith said people tend to enjoy the fresh fruit and “the oyster and clam guy” — Leonard Johnson of Mystery Bay Clam & Oyster Co., who will man his stand Wednesday through Sunday.

“He has quite a following,” Smith said.

Other favorites products are jewelry, plants and fresh made-on-the-spot crepes, she added.

Overall, Smith is pleased with the variety she has lined up so far.

“It’s a real good mix of them,” she said.

And chances are, when visiting the market, shoppers will find other events taking place around the historic mill town this year.

Aside from the annual Medieval Faire, North Kitsap Arts & Crafts Festival, Early Irons Car Show, Oktoberfest and Port Gamble Country Christmas, visitors will have the chance to witness some unique activities.

Port Gamble wedding and events coordinator Julie McAfee locked down Port Townsend’s Olympic Shakespeare group, which will put on the “Taming of the Shrew” on Aug. 20 and Aug. 29.

The theatre group will be able to utilize an area that hasn’t been used yet so far by other groups that have come through.

“The area behind the espresso stand, it’s really conducive to theater back there,” McAfee said.

Another new event added to the roster this year is the dog agility competition that will be hosted by the Muddy Paws Agility Club of Kitsap.

Trained dogs may be entered into this July 10 -11 competition and participate in eight agility events, said club President Gail Fleming.

The competition will take place at the softball fields off Walker Street — the only area in the county that is big enough and that has grounds flat enough for such contests, Fleming said.

“I think Port Gamble is just a gorgeous place,” she added.

McAfee said the best thing about the summer line-up is that each event will bring out Port Gamble’s charm.

“They are all so different and they bring something unique, something special,”

McAfee said. “Everything coming up brings something unique. We really look forward to it.”

A full list of events and descriptions of activities can be found at www.portgamble.org.

SIDEBAR:

Port Gamble’s Calendar of Events for 2004:

April 1-Oct. 31 - Port Gamble Sunday Market

May 8 - Volkssport

June 4-6 - Medieval Faire

July 10 - CCCA Grand Classic 2004

July 10-11 - The Muddy Paw

July 23-25 - North Kitsap Arts & Crafts Festival

Aug. 20-29 - Olympic Shakespeare’s “Taming of the Shrew”

Sept. 12 - Early Irons Car Show

Sept.18-19 - Oktoberfest

Dec. 11 - 12 - Port Gamble Country Christmas

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