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North Union to add second farmers market this summer

Geoff Baldwin Jr., of Diamond, Ohio, shears a sheep April 14 at the opening day of this season’s North Union Farmers Market at Crocker Park. A sheep shearing demonstration has been part of the market’s opening day festivities in recent years, but is not a weekly attraction. (West Life photo by Kevin Kelley)

By Kevin Kelley
Westlake

Fans of Ohio-grown fresh fruits and vegetables will have a second opportunity to purchase their produce at Crocker Park when the North Union Farmers Market launches a Thursday evening market June 14.

Jessica Mason, North Union’s outreach manager, said the second market is being launched for consumers who can’t make it to the Saturday market.

“It’s going to obviously be a smaller market than the one on Saturday,” Mason told West Life. “But I have a feeling it will do really well.”

While the Saturday market, which is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., hosts roughly 20 to 25 vendors at the season’s peak, the Thursday market will have 12 to 16, Mason told West Life. Some of the same farms will be selling produce at each market, she added.

The Saturday market will be extended for about a month at the end of the year, with the final day not coming until Dec. 22. The Thursday market, which will be open from 4 to 7 p.m., will run through August.

The Thursday market will coincide with Crocker Park’s weekly movies in the park series, which takes place during the summer, Mason noted.

Plans are for the Thursday market to be located in the heart of Crocker Park – on Main Street between the Ann Taylor and Chico’s stores, Mason said.

The Saturday market, which opened for the season April 14, moved to a new location this year. Farmers now sell their produce at the corner of Crocker Road and Union Street, behind the Bed, Bath & Beyond store. The market had been, appropriately enough, at the corner of Market Street and Crocker Road.

“The new site really gives us an opportunity for more vendors, and therefore more product,” Mason explained.

Now in its eighth year, the Saturday Crocker Park market is one of the fastest growing in Northeast Ohio in terms of vendors, Mason said. She said farmers markets are growing in popularity all over because consumers want fresh food.

“You’re actually getting the food from the people who grow it,” Mason said. Buyers can also ask questions about the food they’ll be eating, she added.

A North Union official personally visits each farm that sells at one of its markets to ensure the farm produces what it will be selling.

“We don’t allow any reselling at the market,” Mason said.

For more information about the North Union Farmers Market, visit the organization’s website at www.northunionfarmersmarket.org.

 

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