Early Friday evening at the Surrey Night Market and the attendance is low. Photo: Ray Hudson

Hopes pinned on weather change and BC Weekend entertainment

Early Friday evening at the Surrey Night Market and the attendance is low. Photo: Ray Hudson
Early Friday evening at the Surrey Night Market and the attendance is low. Photo: Ray Hudson

Surrey: The Surrey Night Market is looking forward to major entertainment events on July 30 of the BC Day weekend, and a shift to summer weather, to dramatically pick up lagging attendance numbers. The cool and wet late spring and early summer has discouraged people from attending.

Satbir Cheema, who operates the Weekend Night Market, with partners Jazz Narula, and Garry Grewal, said the weekend weather has not been “very conducive” to drawing the greater numbers necessary to making the market a success.

“The season depends on the weather and for some odd reason every weekend has seen at least one day washed out. And each time it rains some of the attractions can’t be set up, as the spaces are wet and must be cleaned up before they can be used. It takes a lot of manpower and there’s lots of time wasted. It’s not good for business.”

Asked how are the vendors are feeling about the season, Cheema said some are doing very well, while others are just making ends meet.

Entertainment attractions and games are a major draw to bring out the kids. “Where the kids go the parents follow, but since the weather has been wet and cold, it’s not very conducive to this type of business,” he said.

“We try to make sure that anybody and everybody, people with disabilities, veterans, serving military, fire and police, children under four feet tall and seniors, can come in for free,” said Cheema. “But (as the operators) we still need to make our expenses back as well as pay the rent, the security people and so on.”

Still, Cheema is optimistic that the entertainment scheduled for the Market over the next few weeks will attract more people.

“Next weekend we will have a Roy Orbison impersonator on Saturday from 7 to 8 and an Elvis impersonator from 8 to 9,” said Cheema,  “and the following weekend, we’ll have an AC/DC tribute band and Bollywood Bhangra. Lots of entertainment for everyone.”

Asked about the numbers and range of food vendors Cheema described the variety of offerings as “good” but chose not to bring in too many more, “because it impacts those already here and profit margins go down.”

One of the busiest tables in the whole market is where the entry box for the Honda Civic draw is located. People need to fill out the “draw” section of their admission ticket and put that in the box. Although many people qualify for free admission, they are reminded that in order to enter the draw, they will have to purchase an admission ticket.

The Surrey Night
Market is on the Cloverdale Fairgrounds, entry from 62 Ave. Parking is free and plentiful. Event and market details are available on their website at Surreynightmarket.com as well as on Facebook.