My curiosity was piqued when co-owner of the new Oshawa Markets, Erik Watson-Tamm, invited me for a tour, as the most recent photos I had seen of the location at 555 Simcoe St. S. were from the set of the Walking Dead, where the old Zellers was used as an abandoned department store. Needless to say, I was floored to see the transformation from a zombie apocalypse into a robust and lively marketplace!
I was even more impressed to hear about the long history of this family-owned market within the Durham Region. The market, which originated in the early 1970s as a vendors market inside what is now the Pickering Town Centre, has grown into one of Ontario's largest indoor markets featuring many vendors and a large indoor food court.
"A lot of these vendors have been with us for over 30, 40 years, and it's cool, the kids are starting to take over, and I've known the kids since we were running around in diapers at the old market. And, now, the kids have grown into their parent's businesses."
The 90,000-square-foot location features a variety of apparel, bath and beauty products, collector's items, grocery items, accessories, and so much more! "It's a great place to spend half a day; you have a ton of unique things that you'll never see anywhere else. There are a ton of handmade... but not at the gallery cost."
Erik doesn't just visit Oshawa for work, "I'm a huge hockey guy, so I go to a lot of Gens games. We've actually just partnered with them, which is awesome. We spend a lot of time downtown, there are a lot of hidden gems, and there are some great restaurants. We absolutely love Bollywood Tacos. We're there once a week!"
Mark your calendar as the Oshawa Markets will be hosting their Christmas Market on December 17 and 18 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. You may even catch a visit from some of your favourite holiday characters!