Farmers markets hit home stretch

Staff writer

As summer makes a gradual transition to fall, county farmers markets are starting to wind down for the year.

After a short break, Peabody’s farmers market was back this year, having its last event for the season Aug. 29.

Organizer N.M. Patton was excited with the outcome of both vendors and attendees.

“This was our best year,” Patton said. “We’ve never been less than eight vendors and it’s been very well attended by the people of Peabody.”

The reason for the break, Patton said, was the lack of vendors.

“I was the only one left and no one else seemed to want to do it,” Patton said. “Suddenly, changing it to Monday night worked.”

A wide variety of merchandise was available for purchase at this year’s market, including vegetables, baked goods, and maple syrup.

“We were very pleased with it and I think the people that came enjoyed it and seemed to want to buy,” Patton said. “People that brought goods liked it, too, cbeause people were buying from them.”

A group will be meeting sometime in October to plan next year’s market.

“The vendors are really excited,” Patton said. “They want to do some different things to make it better.”


Florence’s farmers market is on Tuesdays and will continue through the end of September.

Coordinator Scott Zogelman said attendance was down this year and feels part of it was due to a decrease in Florence’s population.

“When we started it, there was no grocery store in town, but now there is,” Zogelman said, “so that affects it a little bit, too.”

Vendors were still successful, Zogelman said.

“We have fewer vendors coming so they are still doing well because there’s not as many to choose from,” Zogelman said, “so they’re still selling and happy with their sales.”


As the market season comes to a close, a drop in attendance was noticed at the Marion farmers market.

“It’s just sort of one of those thing that as the season come to a close, we don’t have as many people,” coordinator Carol Laue said.

However, Laue said vendors thought it was the best season they have had.

“The vendors expressed to me that they were very pleased with the attendance,” Laue said.

The market committee will be planning off-season educational seminars for present and future vendors.

“One of the vendors suggested meeting once a month to talk and have guest speakers,” Laue said. “We are always open to new ideas.”

If any non-profit organization would like to serve a meal at a market before the end of September, contact Laue at (620) 382-5761.


Hillsboro farmers market coordinator Lena Hall thought this season was great.

“We had about the same amount of vendors as in the past, with a couple new ones that came once in a while,” Hall said.

After the season had begun, Hall was offered the use of Old Towne Market on Main St. to use as an alternative location.

“July and August had such high heat that some nights weren’t as busy because people weren’t getting out,” Hall said.

The change of venue drew mixed reactions from attendees and vendors.

“Some loved it indoors and some loved it outside,” Hall said. “The committee will have to get together to figure out which is best going forward.”

Hall said that without community support, local markets cannot move forward and grow.

“Without the support and people attending, there may not be a market to go to where you live,” she said.

Last modified Sept. 7, 2016