More than a market
Organizers at the Pybus Public Market in Wenatchee have adopted a “surprise-and-delight” philosophy at the community gathering place, its executive director said recently.
One of the goals of the 2-year-old, retail-and-restaurant hub is to give the public something different every week, said Steve Robinson of Pybus Public Market.
That may mean a Lego tournament one weekend or a barbecue competition the next. It could mean the addition of helicopter rides or a visit from some of the Seattle Seahawks. On one recent day, Spiderman stopped in for photos with the kids while a musician was playing a harp in the concourse.
“So you really never know what you might find at Pybus week to week,” Robinson said. “The visitor, we want them to be surprised and have a smile on their face.”
A $9 million private-public partnership between the Pybus Market Charitable Foundation, the City of Wenatchee and the Port of Chelan County, the marketplace is named for E.T. Pybus, a blacksmith and later Wenatchee businessman and leader who died in 1961.
The marketplace is built in the historic Pybus steel warehouse, located next to the Columbia River at the foot of Orondo Street. It is only two blocks from downtown Wenatchee, at the convergence of the popular Apple Capital Loop Trail, Riverfront Park and the Orondo Boat Basin.
Marking its second anniversary this past June, Pybus has quickly grown into one of the premiere destinations in nearby Wenatchee. The property – about the size of a football field – is a year-round marketplace for restaurants, wine, fruit and vegetable vendors, and local craftsmen. It has some 20 individual gift shops, restaurants and specialty food and wine shops, including the Jones of Washington tasting room. Jones of Washington has been at Pybus since it opened.
Pybus, which has tones of the famous Pike Place Market in Seattle, also serves as the permanent home for the Wenatchee Valley Farmer’s Market, recently voted the best farmers market of 2015 by Evening Magazine. On a recent Saturday, Quincy-area favorites Becerra Gardens, Trinidad Lavender Farms and Kallstrom Farms were among the vendors at the farmers market.
The farmers market is held in the summer and fall from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays and 4 to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays. In November and December, the farmers market is 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.
While Pybus has quickly caught the attention and affection of both area residents and tourists, it is not done growing.
The marketplace earlier this summer announced results of an architectural design contest to remodel its annex and events center into a more modern, versatile and light-filled space. The project’s second phase is underway to create scale models of the two top designs and later present them to the public, Robinson said.
“I think it will only get better,” he said of Pybus.
For a list of events happening at Pybus Market Place, including its weekly Friday night live entertainment, go to www.pybuspublicmarket.org.