Text and images © 2006 John B. Blackford. Do not reproduce without express written permission. All rights reserved.
Halloween at the Market, Riegelsville

by John Blackford      

Goblins and majorettes began streaming into the Riegelsville Market for a Halloween bash at 5:00 pm on October 31.

The seasonal event let kids and adults strut their costumes, while sampling gourmet finger food from the store’s In Style Catering. It was the idea of one of the new owners, Craig Skerkis.

Craig and Robyn Mindler took over from previous owner, Lorrie Giddio, only last week, and already the place is overflowing with new plans. Robyn has been manager of the market and catering operation since the beginning, but now she and Craig are co-owners.

Craig was already providing Texas barbeque to the market, and as co-owner, he’ll add hot chili to In Style Catering, served in hollowed-out San Francisco sourdough bread bowls he’s ordering from Fisherman’s Warf.

Craig is still on active duty in the Navy, but in six months, he’ll join the market full-time. In the meantime, Robyn keeps the operation running smoothly and does most of the food preparation.

Craig’s job in the Navy involves marketing and outreach, so he sees an easy transition to promoting the market. As a Riegelsville resident who took a hit from the floods, he did lots of ordering out while the kitchen was rebuilt.

He found that his daughters, Rachael, Madison, and Hannah, often wanted different things. So he plans to offer the River Feast delivery service that will offer fare from In Style Catering, Borderline Café, Riegelsville Inn, Great American Grill, and perhaps the Ferndale Inn, whose crab au gratin, he says, is to die for.

Craig also loves the idea of the Italian piazza, where people can stroll and sit at outside tables. Eventually, he’d like to build one in front of the current laundry, letting customers from local stores have a place to congregate.

But back to the party. In addition to superb appetizers, chili, deserts and spiced hot cider, Robyn and Craig set up a pumpkin-painting operation outside, using bales of hay as tables.

Inside, while majorettes practiced with pom poms, the festive crowd celebrated the idea that having fun can be good for business.


Party gest started at the Riegelsville Market
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Riegelsville Market's new owners, Craig Sherkis and Robyn Mindler, had a Halloween party. (R) Craig and his daughters. (L) Cat Lady Cisca Leistra.
Antique Alley at the Market offered a perfect space to practice with the pom poms.
Betty Giddio (right), who helped create the Bean Block area in town, gets to know a new arrival.