Winter market gets new name, new location

By Martin Kidston

After two successful seasons at a location once known as the Hive on Third Street, the Missoula Winter Public Market is heading for a new home, and getting a new name.

Welcome to the Missoula Valley Winter Marketplace, now operating at the Elks Lodge at 112 N. Pattee St. in downtown Missoula.

“Our lease wasn’t renewed, so we ended up searching for a space in the Elks Lodge,” Franco Salazar told the City Council’s Public Safety and Health Committee, which approved the move this week. “That’s kind of the story behind it.”

Back in July, the Missoula International School was also looking for a new home for its growing Spanish immersion program. It found its future in a 4-acre property located at 800 S. Third St. W. – formerly known as the Hive.

The Missoula International School closed on the property over the summer and is gearing up for construction of a new school. It plans to break ground next spring after razing the property’s dated warehouse, which once served as a lumber yard.

Sale of the property to MIS also prompted the winter market to search for a new home. The inside market extends the city’s summer markets, offering fresh produce, along with arts and crafts.

“Right now, we a lot of the vegetable and agricultural vendors, and the bakeries,” said Salazar. “We also do have arts and crafts. They have a lot of holiday shows going on.”

The Missoula Valley Winter Marketplace will change its hours to 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Parking for the market can be found in the new Park Place parking garage on Front Street.

“They’re now working with the Parking Commission to have a loading zone that’s accessible for the vendors to unload and load everything back in at the end of the day,” said Ward 1 council member Heidi West. “Changing the name to Missoula Valley Winter Market has a much nicer ring to it.”