Thursday, September 4, 2014


Dear market-goers and volunteers,

In order to improve the Really Really Free Market at Campbell Park, we have decided to postpone the monthly market until we come up with and put into effect an action plan. We are most likely to resume in spring 2015.

The areas that we plan to focus on most are:

(1)  Volunteer involvement at the organizational level and at the market;
(2)  Effective and reliable means of transporting market leftovers to charities, etc.;
(3)  Guidelines to spread the sharing and co-operation spirit to the few individuals who continue to engage with the market in a competitive mind-set.

We welcome suggestions as we have in the past--in keeping with the principle that a Really Really Free Market involves no money and no swapping. We encourage and would love to have those of you who are available to become involved in the market in order to hasten bringing back the market as soon as possible.

We are very sorry for any inconvenience that this may cause.

We will miss you all until we see you again. Thank you for making the market the success that it has been for over two years, 26 markets!

Here's to a new and improved Really Really Free Market at the park!

If you would like to hear from us when the market resumes, just send a short message to And don't forget, we always need lots of volunteers! Volunteering is fun, and you can take anything from the market, just like everyone else. If you want to get involved with RRFM, either at the organizing stage, or at the market itself (of both!) drop us your name. Another thing we need help with is taking the leftovers to charities at the end of the market! 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Free services at the Free Market

Free legal advice
The man on the left is Ade, who has been offering free legal advice at the Really Really Free Market for several months now. If you have any legal problems or some questions, bring them to him at the next market. Also available at the next market is Ishwar, who will be sharpening knives from 11 am to 1 pm. Safely pack your knives and bring them for him to sharpen.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Free Legal Advice

Our free legal advice table is continuing to be a popular with market goers. Have a service you wish to offer? Write to us!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

We celebrated our 2-year anniversary on July 5, 2014

Here are scenes from our 25th consecutive all-seasons monthly market since July 2012 at Campbell Park. Photos by S. Poyraz
Would you like to receive monthly announcements from us? Just send a short message to 
We always need lots of volunteers. Volunteering is fun, and you can take anything from the market, just like everyone else. Drop us your name to volunteer at the market, or to take the leftovers to charities at the end of the day! 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Our Second Anniversary will be here soon!

The Really Really Free Market will turn two years old this Saturday! Come celebrate with us by coming to Campbell Park between 10 am and 4 pm! If you can offer up a service or are able to teach a class on any subject you fancy, please let us know by emailing us at See you at the market!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

We've brought back the Facebook page

Please Like us on Facebook. Also, a reminder that you can follow us on Twitter @RRFMToronto.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Results of May Survey

As some of you know, we at the Really Really Free Market conducted a survey to find out more about our market-goers. In total, 44 people completed Part 1 of the web version, 40 people completed Part 2, and 11 completed the paper version at the May market. The following is a breakdown of the results. Because of rounding error and people who skip questions, the percentages may not add up to 100%.
1) What is your gender? 
85% of the survey-takers were female, 14% were male, and 3 either refused to answer or made a joke response in the comments. This comes out to 58 people, which is more than the number of respondents. This is probably because a few people decided to choose a response and also leave a comment.
2) What is your age?
13% were 18 to 24 years old, 33% were 25 to 34, 14% were 35 to 44, 24% were 45 to 54, 7% were 55 to 64, 9% were 65 to 74, and there were no respondents 75 and over. Interestingly, the two biggest age groups were those between the ages of 25 to 34 and 45 to 54.
3) Where do you live?
22% claimed to be from East Toronto (there was one specific mention of Scarborough), 64% were from West Toronto, 4% were from North Toronto, 5% were from Downtown, 4% came from outside Toronto but inside the GTA, and 2% came from outside the GTA altogether. Unsurprisingly, the majority came from the area closest to Campbell Park.
4) How did you find out about the Really Really Free Market?
9% found out about the RRFM as they were passing by Campbell Park, 28% found out through a friend or family member, 5% found out from a poster or flyer, 9% found out from Facebook, 2% found out through Twitter, 5% through this very blog, 7% from Blog TO, 2% from Torontoist, 7% from Craigslist, 4% from NOW Magazine, another 4% found out through a Google search, 2% found out from the Campbell Park Community Supper, 2% from an unspecified newspaper, 2% found out through The Grid, 2% from Charity Village 2012, 2% (1 person) worked at the Peterborough Free Market, and 2% (one person) found out through an unspecified 'Other' method. Word-of-mouth is obviously the most popular method of finding out about the Free Market, but roughly 16% found out through websites or newspapers that are not directly associated with the Really Really Free Market.
5) How long have you known about the Free Market?
13% found out about the Free Market in the past month, 4% had found out within the past 1 or 2 months, 0 had found out in the last 2 to 3 months, 16% had found out in previous 3 to 6 months, 25% found out between 6 months and 1 year ago, and 40% have known for over one year. The answers to this and the following question presents the biggest difference between the results of the web and paper surveys. In the paper survey, a full 45% found out about the Free Market within the previous month, but only 4% in the web survey. Perhaps this is because those who did the web version had not yet gone to a market and felt less of a need to contribute to the survey, while those who were at an actual market had already committed to the idea and were more willing to help out.
6) When was the last time you went/came to the Free Market?
17% were either first-time goers or had not yet gone at all, 29% had gone to the previous market on Apr 5th, 22% had gone two months previously (Mar 1st), 17% had lost gone 3 to 6 months before the survey, 9% had not been to the Free Market in over 6 months, and 7% had not gone in over a year. Again, the paper survey had more new market-goers than the web survey; fully 54% of the paper survey respondents were first-time market goers.
7) If you weren't at the last Free Market, why not?
24% of respondents actually had been at the last market, 10% hadn't known about it yet, 7% forgot to go, 4% didn't like the last market they'd gone to, 2% didn't know the time or place, 2% had slept in, 4% had been ill, and 2% had nothing to bring or take.
8) How often do you go to the RRFM?
20% go to the RRFM every month, 38% go every 2 or 3 months, 18% rarely go, and 20% were new to the market.
9) How do/did you get to Campbell Park?
20% walk, 13% bike, 33% take public transit, and 29% arrive by car. The last statistic is surprisingly large, but perhaps those with the money to own a car are also more likely to own a computer to take a web survey.
10) How long did/does it take you to get to Campbell Park?
56% took less than half an hour, 27% between 30 minutes and one hour, 11% take 1 to 2 hours, and a dedicated 2% (one person) took more than two hours to get to the park. These results are not too surprising, as we found out above that a majority of respondents live in West Toronto, the area of the park.
10a) Did you come with anyone to Campbell Park?
This question was added to the paper version of the survey, so there were only 11 responses. 36% came alone, and 64% came with a friend or family member. No respondents came with children or a dog.
11) How long do you usually stay/How long do you intend to stay today?
39% only stay for less than 30 minutes, 31% stay between 30 minutes and an hour, 14% stay 1 to 2 hours, 6% stay 2 to 5 hours, and there are no respondents who claim they stay from the opening to the closing of the market.
12) Why did you come to the Free Market/go to the last market?
31% said they wanted to get things, 57% wanted to get rid of some of their stuff, 14% came because they were a volunteer, 8% came in by chance, and 4% came to satisfy their curiosity.
13) What kind of things are you interested in?
61% of survey-takers said they were interested in women's clothing, 29% in men's clothing, 25% in kids' clothing, 69% in books and other media, 27% were interested in electronics, 69% in household goods, 49% in kitchenware, 21% in hardware, 14% in sports equipment, 4% in toys, 2% in pet things, 7% in beauty supplies and accessories, 4% in art and craft supplies, and 4% were interested in food items. The items with the most interest were women's clothing, books and media, and household goods. Unsurprisingly, these are also the most common items to be found at the Free Market.
14) How likely are you to return to the Free Market?
2% said they were unlikely to return, 14% said they were somewhat likely, 31% were 'very likely', and 53% were 100% certain they would return.
15) What do you like about the Free Market?
78% of people like the free stuff, an even greater 86% like being able to get rid of their things, 41% like meeting people, 61% enjoy browsing, 10% like the alternate economy, 2% said they just like going to the park, 8% enjoy the "giving atmosphere", and 6% like that they can reduce waste by participating.
16) What don't you like about the Free Market?
Only 4% said the market was too crowded, 8% said the times were inconvenient, 47% did not like overly aggressive market-goers, 31% did not care for the lack of space, 20% did not like the low quality of goods, 4% said it was too disorganized, 2% said the volunteers were unhelpful, 6% complained about the poor selection, 8% said the location was bad, and 2% said the RRFM did not happen often enough. The aggressive market-goers were by far the biggest complaint, and we at the Really Really Free Market are working to address these claims. Already, we've received compliments for implementing the "Chill Out" table and the more visible volunteers, but these measures only mitigate the problem and does not completely solve it. Ultimately, this is what can best be done, but we do welcome any helpful suggestions from market-goers.

We also asked for suggestions on what we can do to improve the Really Really Free Market. There were a few suggestions and comments about the aggressive market-goers, which has already been covered above. There were several calls to improve our promotional efforts to get more people and more goods into the market. A larger venue was also called for, and more locations throughout the city. There was also a plea for a reminder to market-goers to bring in clean items only, which we should all keep in mind. Some of the suggestions are beyond our current resources, such as the larger venue and more locations. While we would like to have markets in other locations, we need volunteers who can run these markets. We at the Campbell Park RRFM would of course offer any assistance we can to those who want to start a market in a different location. If you're interested in doing this, please email us at

In addition, we also asked for suggestions on what we can do for the Really Really Free Market's upcoming second anniversary in July. Many suggested a BBQ or potluck, and quite a few recommended cake (and one anonymous individual said he/she would be able to donate cake from Costco - if you're reading this, please email us). Music was also a common suggestion, as was more free services such as hair cuts and massages. We'll try and implement as much of this as we can, and we will do our best to make our second anniversary a fun day for everyone!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Extra help needed for our July Market (Services and Volunteers)

On July 5th, we celebrate our 2nd year anniversary. 

Our anniversary market is still almost two months away, but we think that in the summer it is better to schedule ahead. During the summer, there is so much going on in Toronto that if we don't find potential contributors now, by the time of the event their schedules will be filled up.

We're hoping to have extra events on our anniversary market. We would like to have more free services like the legal advice desk we've had the last two months. We've already received some interesting suggestions from our ongoing Really Really Free Market Survey (1) & (2). If you have any free services to offer, please let us know as soon as you can so we can include them in our newsletter and promotional material.

Most of all, we need more volunteers than usual. If you volunteer at the market, you can still pick up what you wish. Here are some of the things we will need help with:

  • Setting up the market (If in the park, carrying tables, signs etc. to the park.)
  • Greeting people and explaining how the market works
  • Handing out information about the market
  • Asking whether people would like to sign up for our newsletter or to volunteer
  • Helping people put their stuff on the marked tables
  • Keeping all the tables, racks, and other display areas tidy
  • Separating broken, torn, rotten, grimy, and smelly items from the nice ones (Yes, sometimes people still bring those things--they probably don't read our announcements)
  • Photography/video
  • Taking down the market, and return Campbell Park stuff to the Clubhouse
  • Boxing and bagging leftovers (but not broken, torn, dirty and smelly things)
  • Take those bags and boxes to charities (by foot, bicycle, or motor vehicle  -- we often need a motor vehicle)

In addition to the above, we also need help with pre-market activities, such as publicity, facebook, twitter, blogging, newsletter, volunteer coordinating, answering e-mail inquiries, organizing monthly meetings, finding nearby charities to donate leftovers, coordinating drop-offs to charities, networking, taking and publishing meeting minutes,and so on.

Write us to volunteer for any of our markets, including the upcoming June 7th market.

Scenes from our May Market:

  Photos by Sidney Anson Leyva and Suzan Poyraz

Monday, April 28, 2014

Really Really Free Market Survey

Hello, current and future market-goers! If you have a few minutes to spare, we at the Really Really Free Market would like to really, really know about you. Please fill out our survey below. It should take about 5 minutes to complete. Please be sure to complete both parts.

Part 1:
Part 2:

Thank you for participating in our survey!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Free legal advice table, dog nail-trimming demo, and our new Chill-Out table!

Big thanks go to our paralegal friend Ade for spending all day at the market helping individuals who needed a legal perspective on a concern of theirs. Another thanks to Diana: with the blessings of her poodle friend, she demonstrated how to properly and efficiently trim the nails of a dog. Do you have a service to offer at the market (free, of course)? Please let us know.Write to us also if you would like to volunteer at the market greeting people or helping keep the market organized, or in some other way.

The purpose of the chill-out table was to provide people who spend all day at the market a place to hang out rather than having to stand around the tables, where there is only enough space for people looking at the goods. While they chilled out, they helped themselves to free coffee and baked goods. Curious about what kinds of goods came to the market this time? Here are some shots from the market.

Photographs by Suzan Poyraz

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Our March market was our 21st in a row!

One of the things we love about our market is that people will make their way to it no matter the weather: Soaking humidity, torrential rain, temperatures in the double-digit minus celcius. Look at some of the fun stuff market-goers brought with them to our March 1st market....

Photos by S. Poyraz
Want to be alerted a week before each market? Send a request to be put on our mailing list. Want to volunteer at the market or in organizing the market? Write to us with "volunteering" in the subject line.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Here are some items and happy browsers from our winter markets in December, January and February. Send us your market photos!

Photos courtesy of Mary Kate Dall
Scroll down to see all the fun stuff from our previous 21 markets!
Want to be alerted a week before each market? Send a request to be put on our mailing list.