The bustling town of Blackwood south of Adelaide, is a place I enjoy to visit. While the town centre seems crammed with cars and wall to wall shops, if you deviate off to the side streets you can get the feel of the village it was when I grew up there. It has a friendly relaxed pace of life and a cooler climate than on the plains, making it particularly good to visit in the warmer months.
The Blackwood Craft Market has been running for over 20 years at the Blackwood Memorial Hall, not far from the "Five Ways" roundabout and the Blackwood centre. As I expected parking was at a premium because the market was busy, but luckily services had finished at a church down the road so I found a spot there.
The market lives up to its name - it is definitely for crafts, food and vegetables rather than a car boot style place. While traditionally this may appeal more to women, there were still things of interest for guys too. Of course children weren't forgotten, with Surf Rider Joe books available from local author Paul Rutter.
Many of the market stalls are operated by local people, but not all as I discovered when I paused to investigate some pleasant aromas. The Dancing Shadows designer candles stall was causing some delightful fruity smells to waft by my nose even though none were lit at the time.
After chatting with the vendors I discovered that the Dancing Shadows candles are naturally made with wax from soy beans, and while the fragrances are artificial they certainly smelled pleasant. The candles are also available at other markets including the Fullarton Markets and the Mitcham Village Markets.
I spotted a unique product that I hadn't ever seen at market stalls - a range of bowls made from old vinyl records. You could take your pick from singers such as Barbara Streisand, Craig McLaughlin, Alice Cooper, John Farnham or Elton John. The perfect present for someone who appreciates their music.
There were many more market stalls inside the Blackwood Memorial Hall than outside, with a huge collection of products to browse through. People on restricted diets would be interested in gluten free and preservative free jams, chutneys and sauces, while there were some deliciously colourful cakes on display from Sugar Lust Cakes by Kelly.
Local woodturner Alan Galloway had a collection of carefully crafted wooden products - each individually made to respect the shape and grain of the wood that he works on. The beautifully polished final product is truly a tribute to the tree.
There were many more market stalls with crafts and other delicacies at the market - check out the Blackwood Craft Market on Facebook to see more examples of what is available. The Blackwood Craft Market operates on the first Sunday of every month - take a trip up to Blackwood and check it out.
Blackwood has never been promoted to any great extent....yet...within it's boundaries/area , there are nice walks,picnic / playgrounds/botanic gardens/railway stations/creeks etc.Must pay a visit to the markets soon.
Fifty years ago Blackwood could be classified as a town...the last town on the rail line to the suburbs and eventually the Adelaide Railway Station. Now it is suburbia,full of all the services one comes to expect at large suburban centres.As you have indicated.that once you leave the shopping drag.there is a whole new world of shady streets,creeks,walking paths.playgrounds and parks ideal for picnics and strolls under the canopies.So,hop on a train to the Blackwood Railway Station and find out for yourselves what you are missing.