Chester Sunday Market
Details About This Location
Held rain or shine, Sundays starting June 15, 10 am to 1 pm, on Main Street. This market features about two dozen vendors, including weekly guest vendors and is a CT Grown, Producer-Only Market offering Organic produce, meats, mushrooms, candy, cheese, breads, seafood, dog food, honey, artisanal soaps, jams, jellies, prepared foods and the Market Host yogurt smoothies.
Handicap-accessibility: the market is all on one level. There is a bicycle rack Chester is a big bike town, but bike riders are asked to walk their bikes through the market itself. Leashed, friendly dogs are welcome.
Market day includes a community tent, cooking demonstrations, and guest chefs. Face painting, hopscotch, hula hooping, bubble blowing, story tellers are some of the activities for kids who may also enjoy local merchant’s smoothies, food, ice cream, candy and toys.
"Fair Square Market" is held the second Sunday of each month and features local artisans, wares and crafts.
There are multiple choices for food available at the market and from merchants in Chester. The market itself has a bistro area complete with live music, tables, chairs and umbrellas.
Chester Sunday Market came in third overall in Connecticut in the American Farmland Trust's 2011 America's Favorite Farmer's Market Contest. Volunteers are scattered throughout the market for market goers to ask questions, hand out samples, and to keep the market a safe place for all to enjoy.
There are three convenient lots with parking in Chester. Water Street has the public parking lot and First Niagara's lot and then there is a lot on Maple Street. For those feeling environmental, there is also the Exit 6 parking lot with a free shuttle bus supplied by the market which takes people to and from the market from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm. The bus also makes the rounds to the marinas for boaters to come and enjoy the market.
Yankee Magazine calls Chester's Connecticut’s Best Gathering of Galleries~ “Works in a mix of media and styles by emerging and established artists are displayed in an eclectic collection of nearly 40 galleries. The fine and the funky all make their home in the village center, within steps of one another and easy parking.”
Dina Varano, 27 Main Street, a spirited gallery featuring designs by the owner, a RISD grad who makes hammered jewelry and wares inspired by natural influences and a collection of fellow artists’ finely crafted artware.
Lori Warner Studio & Gallery, 21 Main Street, features her art and one of a kind jewelry, art, and glass. Lori offers demos on market days.
The RJ Vicker's Herbery, 26 Water Street, sells herbs, soaps, linens, candles and oil paintings.
The Hammered Edge Studio & Gallery,4 Water Street, sells jewelry, antique and vintage glass beads from Europe, new art glass beads, and fair trade gifts.
Leif Nilsson Spring Street Studio & Gallery,1 Spring Street, fine art gallery featuring local contemporary, impressionistic art by resident artist, Leif Nilsson. Also featuring works by local photographer, Caryn B. Davis.
CT River Artisans Cooperative and Mill House Gallery
Museums & Culture
The Chester Historical Society’s Museum at the Mill, 9 West Main St., open 11 am-2 pm, has an award-winning permanent exhibit Streams of Change: Life and Industry along the Pattaconk that tells a compelling history of this town
The Norma Terris Theater, where the Goodspeed Opera House develops new musicals, is located within walking distance to the market on North Main Street.
CT River Museum, at 67 Main Street in nearby Essex, offers park-like grounds overlooking scenic Essex harbor. The Museum's galleries exhibit artifacts, maps, paintings and crafts of the Connecticut River and convey its rich heritage.
The historic 75-foot gaffe rigged schooner Mary E is typical of the ships that sailed up and down the New England Coast and the Connecticut River, stopping at ports like Essex to pick up and offload a variety of goods. The fee for an afternoon cruise includes admission to the CT River Museum’s exhibits and galleries.
To view scheduled events in the community check the calendar here.
The Chester–Hadlyme Ferry is the second oldest continuously operating ferry service in the state and a designated historical landmark. The ferry connects Chester to Hadlyme and provides a convenient link between Gillette Castle State Park and the Essex Steam Train.
The Essex Steam Train pulls vintage coaches through the picturesque towns of Deep River and Chester as well as surrounding countryside including pristine meadows, a quaint farm, a millpond with waterfall, and trestles and bridges over rivers and creeks. There is a convenient train stop where the Chester Sunday Market Shuttle bus will pick you up and return you after shopping at the market.
The Becky Thatcher Riverboat offers a cruise along the Connecticut River with views of deep water, coves, inlets, marshes, wildlife, rocky shoreline, Gillette Castle, Goodspeed Opera House, and the Haddam Swing Bridge.
Cockaponset State Park, in Chester and Haddam, offers Fishing, Mountain Biking, Hiking, Horseback Riding, Swimming, and Letterboxing.
Within the Cockaponset State Park is the 50+ acre Pattaconk Lake. Its 8 MPH limit makes it perfect for paddling. Water-skiing and use of internal combustion engines are prohibited. There is a Car Top/Carry-In Boat Launch in Chester.