At last week’s market we caught up with Danielle and JP from Pursuit Adventures.
What do you sell?
Danielle: At the market we sell ice pops: handmade ice pops made with real fruits. Outside of the market we are actually a tour company. We offer hiking, sightseeing, snowshoeing, skiing and snowboarding day trips from Red Deer.
How did you start your business?
Danielle: We’ve been running tours for 5 years. This year we started making all the lunches and snacks for the tours. We wanted a refreshing treat for our guided hikes. We found that a lot of people wanted the refreshing treat without the hike so we started selling the ice pops at the local markets.
What is a “must try”?
Danielle: A must try I think is the lime. It has about half a lime in it and its super good.
What makes you awesome? Why should people choose Pursuit Adventures?
Danielle: We just are! Just kidding. What makes us awesome? Our simplicity. We like to keep the experience simple and delightful.
How do you make your ice pops?
JP: We keep it nice and simple. For example, the Raspberry Basil is a lot of raspberries and a little of our own simple syrup infused with basil. Nothing extra. We’ve started to post the recipes on our website for those who want to find out more.
What is your favorite thing that you sell?
JP: The Raspberry Honey Yogurt is my favorite ice pop.
Is there anything people need to be educated about when it comes to your line of work?
Danielle: 1. A hike is a delightful walk in the woods. Hiking is fun and it’s great to be outdoors. 2. You have to try the ice pops to know how good they are. 3. Popsicles is a trademark. That’s why we call them ice pops.
Does anyone else sell your ice pops?
Danielle: Currently we are the only ones who sell them. We’ve been asked by a few store so there might be something coming there.
How many markets do you attend?
Danielle: A lot. We’ve got the ATB Downtown Market and Lacombe on Wednesdays, Rocky Mountain House Thursdays, Food Truck Fridays, Red Deer Public Market as well as Bentley on Saturdays and we’ll be attending Innisfail on Tuesdays.
Do you have a favorite market?
Danielle: Downtown Red Deer because we like being interviewed. Its close, we can bike here.
JP: Actually I like the crowd. It’s been a fun crowd at the Wednesday Market. It’s really nice because a lot of the same people who come on tours are at the Wednesday market. It gives us a chance to catch up.
How did you first find out about the ATB Downtown Market?
JP: We are based Downtown and we are part of the Downtown Business Association. We weren’t sure how many markets we could do when we started with the ice pop cart but Mike at True North Realty convinced us to give it a shot. We’ve been here since.
What is your favorite thing about being Downtown?
JP: Downtown has come such a long way in the last 5 or 6 years. We have been Downtown since we opened an office and between our office, the markets and living in Parkvale it’s easy to get anywhere, you can walk to everything. There’s a lot of good restaurants, shops and also great people.
Do you have a favorite business on this street or favorite other vendor in the market?
JP: I’m a really big fan of the chicken from Klein Farm. Their sausages are really good plus they usually have some ready for me to pick up on my way out. The baked goods from The Maple Tree are worth coming to the market for. We worked with our market neighbor, the Jelly Barn, to make some strawberry rhubarb pops. Those have been very popular and there’s more feature pops coming.
What advice would you give to people just starting out?
JP: Keep it simple. Just get started and execute. Try different ideas. It’ll be long hours, lots of work and everything will take longer than you’d like so pick something you’re passionate about.
How do you define success?
Danielle: I think you just have to feel like you are successful. I know it sounds silly but you can’t set super high, really lofty goals and expect to get there on your first day. You have to be realistic and set targets and work towards them. Don’t set your goals based on what other people think. Figure out what you need to be happy and work toward that. Again, keep it simple.