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Dansby: Farmers market had good season at market

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PowerPlant Marketplace Manager Neal Dansby said the local produce market had a good year.

The farmers market closed its doors for the season last Saturday.

“We’ve had a very good year,” Dansby said. “We had more vendors and patrons than we have ever had before.”

Dansby said due to the early spring, the marketplace was able to open a little bit earlier.

“It got hot and dry before the end, though,” he said. “I wanted to thank everybody for coming out. Those vendors were able to brave the heat and sunshine.”

Dansby said there was a good variety of produce sold at the market this year.

“We had a good selection of things within the season,” he said. “The season is sometimes shorter than you’d like it to be.”

Some of the fruits, vegetables and other products sold at the marketplace include tomatoes, corn, jellies, salsas, butter beans, cantaloupes, baked goods, aprons and hot sauces, okra, peas, pickled reserves, figs and deli items.

One of the bright spots of this year’s marketplace was the number of vendors who sold their produce.

“With repeat vendors, we averaged probably 14-18 per day,” Dansby said. “The most we had in one day was 24.”

Dansby said over the course of the summer, the marketplace saw somewhere in the thousands come and shop for produce.

Now that the marketplace is closed for the season, Dansby said he’s already thinking about next year and ways to make it better.

“We always evaluate that,” he said. “It all depends on the weather. Basically, it’s being able to see what the weather does. If the temperature gets above 90 degrees, then the plants won’t do well.”

Dansby encouraged farmers and potential vendors to start preparing for next year, when the marketplace is slated to open next summer.