Baldwin City downtown farmers market opens for season Saturday
Ivan Huntoon says the Baldwin City Farmers Market he has coordinated for the past four years fills a personal as well as community need.
“I’m more a customer than anything,” Huntoon said. “I’ve always been a huge fan of farmers markets and a bigger fan of local vendors.
“I’ve contributed what I can for a guy who can’t really grow anything on my own.”
The Baldwin City Farmers Market will return for the season from 7:30 a.m. to noon Saturday at its customary spot in the 700 block of High Street between the Post Office and Lumberyard Arts Center.
A regular customer, Huntoon moved into his present role when saw the market on down days.
“On a couple of weekends, I drove by on rainy days and saw the need for canopies and if they had canopies the vendors would have still been there,” he said.
With the help of his employer, Baldwin State Bank, Huntoon secured canopies for the market and now helps set them up at 7 a.m. each Saturday during the season.
The spruced-up look the canopies give the market help attract customers by giving it the appearance of an event, Huntoon said. But its real draw is the products sold each Saturday morning, he said.
“The products speak for themselves,” he said. “Once people start coming and they have some of the product, they come every weekend just because it’s that good.”
A few vendors have already signed on for this season, and more will show up Saturday morning or when they start harvesting produce in their gardens. Although produce may be the backbone of the market, there are always other goodies for early customers, Huntoon said.
“We’ll have baked goods — the pie ladies, Charlene Potter and Char Hannon, are very popular — jams, jellies, salsas,” he said. “In the past we’ve had people with coffee. We’re working at setting up someone making breakfast burritos or something where a family can come down to get a little breakfast.
“Also in the past, we’ve had people with handmade crafts and eggs. It’s an assortment of good things that are all produced locally.”
Vendors pay $5 a week to sell at the market or $30 for the season. Anyone interested in being a vendor should call Huntoon at (785) 594-6421.