Farmers’ market planning starts with — what else — food
2012-03-09 / Local News
By IAN LORD, Eagle Times Staff Writer
Above: One of the vendos is surrounded by seasonal products at last fall’s farmers’ market in Windsor.
Above: Customers look over some of the wares at a booth. The market will be entering its third year this summer. COURTESY PHOTOS
WINDSOR — Although yesterday would’ve been perfect for an outdoor community event, it’s still a long way off until farmers’ markets pop up throughout the area.
But a lot more goes into the markets than just farmers setting up booths and selling vegetables, and Windsor Farmers’ Market organizer got a jump on this year’s weekly series.
Windsor Town Manager Tom Marsh joined about 20 vendors and farmers’ market board members Wednesday night for a pot luck dinner and a preliminary organizational meeting. Entering the market’s third year in Windsor, organizers were eager to establish a board and begin laying out the ground work for what they hope will be a successful summer.
“The market is essentially still a work in progress,” said Windsor resident and sheep farmer Jen Cary, who served as the market’s treasurer last year.
Cary and others discussed issues the farmers’ market had with the Windsor Improvement Corporation — the non-profit umbrella the market is organized under for insurance purposes — and how to steer away from some of the problems they faced in the past.
As an ex-officio member of WIC, Marsh said that organization has gone through a dramatic restructuring. As a support for Windsor’s community and non-profit organizations, WIC has been reorganized to better serve entities like the farmers’ market, Marsh said.
Taking over as town manager last August, Marsh is a relative newcomer in Windsor and was trying to understand what the market needs to be successful, and where the town can step in to help out. While urging the market board and organizers to do as much of the promotions and work as they can, Marsh said he’ll be available to help out in certain areas.
“There should be good communication, frequently,” he said. “We’ll just work it out.”
Scheduling was a topic that brought a lot of conversation Wednesday night. With the market typically on Sunday afternoons, vendors and board members said they’ve received positive feedback from others about their schedule. With neighboring communities like Cornish and Hartland hosting farmers’ markets on other days of the week, Sunday was discussed as the best opportunity for vendors to set up booths in Windsor.
Starting back up fresh, people volunteered to serve on the farmers’ market board and organizational meetings were scheduled for the next few weeks. Mike Cammock volunteered to serve as the treasurer, citing his experience with accounting software. Jerry Gingras volunteered for the vice-president position.
The board will decide if they want to hire a market manager or if they want to delegate those responsibilities to a number of volunteers and board members.
Windsor Selectboard member Clayton Paronto also joined the meeting, and urged the farmers’ market board to be flexible and to keep an open mind when organizing the market.“Your market is in its infancy,” he said. “You’re going to [This is how the article ended!]
For an electronic version, go to: http://www.eagletimes.com/news/2012-03-09/Local_News/Farmers_market_planning_starts_with__what_else__fo.html