September 27, 2016
Camberwell Market hits 40!
The perfect way to spend a sunny, Sunday morning, Camberwell Market has etched itself into the hearts of the local Boroondara community since its humble beginning 40 years ago.
Established in 1976 by the Balwyn Rotary Club, what was initially a small market to help raise funds for humanitarian and community initiatives has bourgeoned into a local icon that attracts more than 250,000 visitors each year and raises more than $20,000 each week.
Every Sunday, the Camberwell Market takes over Market Place - the large, shopping centre carpark behind Burke Road - transforming it into a mecca for vintage lovers and bargain hunters alike. A local institution, the market has woven its way into the lives of its frequenters, who trek from across Melbourne to sell their wares or to find a hidden treasure.
Each market stall offers its own, unique set of products with some stall holders only there for the day to sell their once worn, much loved clothing and others regulars who sell a wide variety of well-priced goods. Market-goers can stumble upon anything from flowers to footwear and rare vintage decor. Or maybe just a warm jam donut and some good local music.
More than just a fun day out, the market remains a worthy cause with the continued involvement of the Balwyn Rotary Club. Affiliated with Rotary International, the organisation aims to support and serve the community by making a positive impact. Their motto is "service above self" and nothing could be further from the truth: in fact this small community organisation of around 60 members has raised over 14 million dollars since establishing the Camberwell Market four decades ago.
Market-goers contribute a very modest gold coin donation for the opportunity to browse the many aisles of eclectic goods on offer. These donations directly benefit communities both locally and further afield. In recent times, Balwyn Rotary Club donations have helped fund the Boroondara Literary Awards, the City of Boroondara Eisteddfod Competition, Eastern Emergency Relief, Violence Free Families, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tertiary Scholarships and the Timor Leste Program.
With no plans to slow down any time soon, the Camberwell Market opens its gates bright and early every Sunday morning from 6:30 am until 12:30 pm at Market Place in Camberwell.