THERE’S a big May coming your way, with markets, events, festivals and a very special opening too.

Kemps General Store is the newest addition to Malton’s independent retailers and I’m sure it’s going to be great.

As the daughter of owners of a village shop, Liz Kemp describes the opening of her new emporium as “re-establishing” the shop, as it already existed down south, but her philosophy will be the same – old fashioned shop keeping, enhanced customer service plus an eagerness to get to know her customers and what they want.

Liz plans to pack her store with the beautiful and unusual, stocking books, stationery and art, as well as other stunning and unusual gifts. Whether you’re a foodie, a gardener, a crafty person or just someone who likes great quality and loves giving lovely gifts, I’m sure Kemps will have something for you. The store opens on Saturday, so be sure to pop round and say hello.

On Saturday, May 13, the Malton Monthly Food Market is back with a range of superb stalls, street food, live demonstrations and the White Star Brass Band playing live.

I am particularly pleased that Arnolds Oyster Bar will be back, so make sure you get schucking in the Market Place, the food of love is always welcome in Malton.

There will also be three Malton Food Tours this month. The tours have really caught the public’s imagination. Eat, drink, walk seems to be a simple but appealing offer and getting behind the scenes of Malton’s foodie businesses has never been more interesting and more delicious.

Although the May tours are fully booked we have more dates online for the rest of the summer, so do take a look.

Then there’s Beertown, Malton’s Craft Beer Expo, which returns for its third year on May 18, 19 and 20. I’ll be pulling pints on the Thursday so will try not to pour beer over everyone.

Run by Brass Castle and Bad Seed Breweries, this is an event that truly celebrates the best of local, regional and international beers and with so many awards won by both beer houses, the event is set to really grow this year.

Oh and then there’s a small matter of Malton Food Lovers Festival with an estimated 30,000 people expected to visit over the weekend of May 27 and 28.

Levi Roots will be playing live on the Saturday night with his 12-piece reggae band and the new Great British Bake off Judge, Prue Leith is returning too.

Tickets for the demos are on sale now and selling fast. The festival, as always, will be a huge celebration of Yorkshire’s finest produce and cooking. With more stalls than ever (160-plus), street food galore, talks, tastings, demos, live music, cookery lessons and famous chefs, it’s one massive Yorkshire Foodie Glastonbury. For details, go to