What do you do when you buy a piece of property that has a unique old barn in fantastic condition? If you’re Ann-Marie Boyles, you turn it into a venue to support local crafts people and antique vendors. Supporting local artists is not the only benefit of Bethel Barn Market - all proceeds from hosting festivals at the barn which is in Vale will be donated to a cause. 

The first festival will be held on March 20 and 21.

“To be honest,” Boyles said. “The first time I saw the barn I thought it was weird. Why does that barn look like that? We fell in love with it. We went back and forth between different things that we wanted to do with it, such as a vineyard. I saw the idea of a barn sale in a magazine and that was it.”

The barn is massive and from the outside, looks a bit like a church with a steeple. 

Boyles, who was a stay-at-home-mom for 25 years, said that she loves antiques, vintage items and crafting and wanted to be able to travel to craft fairs every week but wasn’t able to do it due to parenting demands.

“This is the best of both worlds,” she said. “I get to do it, but I don’t have to travel, and I get to help all the vendors.”

For the festival in March, there are 30 vendors lined up, live music and two food trucks. Several of the vendors are nonprofits or fair-trade merchants such as Empower for Hope which supports employs, encourages and empowers vulnerable women locally in Mecklenburg County as well as in East Africa. They sell their handmade global goods to support their initiatives to improve health and hope in Burundi, Africa. 

“That’s a huge mission for me as far as this barn market goes,” Boyle said. “I want to help small businesses and give back. Whatever I make off the sale in March will be donated to a fund started by a dear friend of mine from Charleston to raise money for her daughter who has a very rare form of cancer. It’s so rare, they’ve started a foundation to do research. There’s a lot of vendors who are coming that are like that.”

“Bethel” means house of God and that’s what Boyle thinks the property that she and her husband live on in Vale is, hence, the name of the farm and venue. 

The festival is on Friday, March 20 and Saturday, March 21 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days. The market is located at 8992 Reepsville Road in Vale. For more information, including a list of vendors, visit https://www.bethelbarnmarket.com.

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