Phyllis and Bob Desnoyers. Phyllis retired from the market on Sat. May 27. Her baking business is called “Phyllis Home Baking”. Morin Photo
METCALFE – The Metcalfe Farmers’ Market is a special place.
Over the past 30 years hundreds of vendors have made the popular market their own and along the way joined a special family of people.
Phyllis Desnoyers, has been selling her baked goods at the Metcalfe Farmer’s market for the past 29 years. She joined the market one year after it was founded on the Metcalfe fairgrounds.
On Sat., May 27, Phyllis retired from the market taking with her years of great memories and more friends made than she could count.
At 76 years old, Phyllis decided it was time to slow down a little. Now she is looking forward to visiting the market each week as a consumer and friend to all of the vendors there.
She said, “I cannot thank my customers and fellow vendors enough for all they have done for me. It is like being part of a big family.”
Like many bakers, Phyllis learned her craft as a child in her mother’s farm kitchen. Her mother baked everything from pies to bread to cookies.
“I started to learn how to bake when I was 8 years old,” said Phyllis, “I can remember my mother teaching me how to make homemade bread and pies.
I have always liked baking. Growing up on the farm you would never eat a store bought pie.”
When Phyllis grew up she worked for the government, later when her children came along she left the government and with her husband, Bob, of 55 years came to Metcalfe.
She always enjoyed working with people and with her love of baking going to the market was an obvious choice.
Twenty-nine years ago she decided she would make a committed decision to start up her baking business called “Phyllis Home Baking”. Her plan was to bake everything at home and then bring to the market every Saturday to be sold.
Her decision was a good one.
“I think I started out with 10 pies and two dozen butter tarts,” said Phyllis. “It just kept growing and growing. That’s how it all came about.”
Getting all of her baking done in time for the Saturday market has never been a problem for her.
She has a baking disciple for each of her items. Bread one day, and pies the next then on to date squares, cookies, and cinnamon buns.
She said while she is retiring from the market she is not going to the retiring from her baking business.
“I will be able to bake at my own pace.”
She is still going to be taking baking orders from her market customers over the phone or through email.
Phyllis said being a vendor at the market has been a wonderful experience.
“I have met such wonderful people there,” she said.
She said, “The market is phenomenal. You meet so many wonderful people. I know I will miss it.”
You can get in touch with Phyllis at 613-821-0815 or email her at: email@example.com
Joseph Morin is the Editor of the Eastern Ontario AgriNews, and the Record. He is, despite years of practice, determined to eventually play the guitar properly. He has served the Eastern Ontario community as a news editor, and journalist for the past 25 years with the Iroquois Chieftain, Kemptville Advance, West Carleton Review, and Ottawa Carleton Review in Manotick. He has never met a book he did not like.