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City Public Market To Celebrate National Farmers Market Week In August

The Jamestown Public Market is getting ready for a jam packed first week of August, in celebration of National Farmers Market Week.

The first National Farmers Market Week was celebrated in 1999 following a proclamation by the USDA. Each August, farmers markets across the country spend the week advocating for the importance of farmers markets, their impact and how community members can support them.

This year the Jamestown Public Market has planned more events and activities than ever before aimed at celebrating the market, its farmers, vendors and customers.

According to the Farmers Market Coalition, “farmers markets and CSAs saw an increase of 35% (in customers) in 2020, showing the potential for growth in new shoppers during pandemic recovery.” The Jamestown Public Market was no exception, with an astonishing 68% increase in sales between 2019 and 2020.

“We often forget that all of life starts and is sustained by the fertility of the earth and our farmers who till and toil,” said the Rev. Luke Fodor of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, the market’s home sponsor. “We need to be reminded that it is the growing season that teaches us to tell time and to mark the seasons. St. Luke’s Episcopal Church is delighted to partner with the Jamestown Public and Mobile markets to create a weekly reminder for us to live life in abundance. When we embrace the circular nature of the food system by celebrating locally grown and produced food, we honor our rootedness in the earth’s goodness and practice sustainable living. The market has helped the people of St. Luke’s connect with the growing season while enjoying food that’s better for our bodies and Mother Earth.”

The market continues to see expansion during the current season, with it’s move to Third Street having a significant impact. Many vendors have reported record sales consistently, and the market has had record breaking applications for vendors.

Linnea Carlson, market director, also wants the Jamestown community to know the power they have in shopping locally. For every dollar spent on local products and retail stores, $2.29 is generated in the local economy.

“You have power in where you spend your dollars,” she said. “Big grocery chains, they do not support small farms or local families. The food is shipped from miles away, you do not know where or how it was grown or raised. When you shop at the public market you can meet your farmer, the produce is so fresh. And you are supporting small, locally owned businesses.”

The city of Jamestown will kickoff the celebration with a flag raising ceremony and an official proclamation in celebration of National Farmers Market Week.

The market will celebrate farmers with a fundraising event hosted at Abers Acres, in Kennedy, Aug. 1 from 1-3 p.m. Abers has been one of the longest running vendors at the public market and is its only certified organic grower. The event will feature a farm tour by owner Sue Abers; drink samples from Ellicottville Distillery, a new vendor at market this season; an opportunity to visit the U-pick blueberry field; and a chance to explore Abers’ farm store. Tickets are priced at $40 per individual and can be purchased at https://bit.ly/JamestownFarmTour.

In addition to the fundraising event and flag raising, the market will also be updating its window display, located at Covenant Manor along Third Street.

“Covenant Manor have been the best neighbors we could ask for, for several years now,” Carlson said. “Not only do they donate storage for the market, but we have also made so many friends with residents who visit us each week. We have had our ‘History of the Market’ display up for two years now and we want to update it to reflect what our community loves about the public market today.”

Children and community members can submit a creation reflecting what they love about the market in the form of a drawing, painting, sculpture or other artistic expression. All submissions will be used in the market’s display and one lucky participant will receive a market ‘Swag Bag’ and gift certificate. Individuals can register to submit a creation at https://bit.ly/LoveMarketContest

The Jamestown Public Market is open Saturdays, along Third Street, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The market is made possible thanks to support from the Jamestown Renaissance Corp., Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, The Chautauqua Center, Blue Cross Blue Shield of WNY, and Novel Destination. For more information on how to support the public market this National Farmers Market week, visit jtownpublicmarket.org or facebook.com/jamestownpublicmarket.

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