The fourth year for the Archbold Farmers Market begins tomorrow, Thursday.
Jay Budde, a member of the farmers market task force, said over the last two years, the market averaged about 100 visitors each Thursday, with five to six vendors.
“Our vendors are happy; they’re selling out,” he said.
Budde said the task force is looking for another baker to add to the mix.
“We’ve always hoped to have several bakers. Competition (between vendors) is good,” he said.
“We have not reached a critical mass yet on vendors.”
Last year, the market changed its hours to be open from 3-6 pm instead of 3:30-7 pm.
“By seven o’clock, downtown is dead,” Budde said. “The change was helpful to customers.”
No New Location
There have been discussions about changing the location, but it will remain on Depot Street.
On market days, village offi cials block off Depot Street east of North Defiance Street, turning the street into an open mall.
“We talked about moving to the parking lot north of the railroad tracks. But our experience, with the volume of trains that come through– the customers wouldn’t like it,” he said.
Another suggestion was moving the market to the parking lot on the east side of Vine Street.
Budde said vendors didn’t like the idea, because it would be too far away from the North Defiance Street traffic.
“The vendors would not have the visual connection with St. Rt. 66, unless we put a clown out in the middle of St. Rt. 66,” he said.
“Depot Street has more positives than any other.”
The task force did not discuss moving the market to a location outside the village historic downtown district.
“We are committed to downtown,” he said.
New this year is a scavenger hunt-style activity for children.
Children will be given a form and asked to find things like the largest and smallest vegetables in the market, what vegetables grow underground, etc.
Budde said the task force is looking for volunteers to become market managers.
Market managers greet customers, assist them in finding items in the market, and open and close.
The Archbold farmers markets are open Thursdays through September.