Farmers market manager encourages new sign-upsPublished 12:30am Sunday, April 21, 2013
Nearly half of the available spaces for the Ironton Farmers Market are already reserved and the new market manager is pushing for more support.
“We want to get all the participation we can so we can hopefully make this into an event,” said Sam Heighton.
Heighton, an Ironton aLIVE board member, volunteered to be this year’s market manager. This is also the first year the market has had a leader to organize vendors.
“I have a passion for Ironton and have lived here all my life,” Heighton said. “… I can see a lot of improvements downtown and I want to be a part of keeping that going.”
Although last year’s market worked well, Heighton said, there was no one to ensure all vendors were selling locally and homegrown produce or to address any grievances vendors may have. Heighton attended a market manager seminar in Columbus last month and said he is prepared to lead the charge and even plans to visit farms in the off-season to make sure farmers are keeping active.
Heighton said, so far, all the vendors who have signed up are returning vendors from last year. Those who have already signed up do not need to attend the next meeting.
Farmers interested in having a space for the 2013 season can meet at noon Monday at the Transit Café to sign up. Registration is free and the first market day is Saturday, April 27 beginning at 7 a.m. People can also call Heighton to register, at (740) 532-7951.
April 27 is a soft opening, Heighton said, and the grand opening will be June 1 with extra events planned for that day.
Beginning in May, the farmers market will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., or until sold out, Fridays and Saturdays, until the end of October.
Heighton said the Friday market is experimental.
“If we get enough (farmers) we’ll do it next year, too,” he said.
The Transit Café will also be open for breakfast during market times.
Heighton is also working on a website to display photos and the names of vendors, what people can expect to find at the market, as well as a calendar of events. The site is still under construction but features market rules and regulations.
This site is www.orgsites.com/oh/farmers-market-ironton/index.html
Heighton also said folks can expect to see the farmers market represented in this year’s Ironton-Lawrence County Memorial Day Parade.