Hampton Farmer’s Market enjoys successful first season

Thursday, September 26, 2019 | 12:01 AM

Vendors at the Farmer’s Market in Hampton will be closing shop for the season with their last day on Oct. 16.

The event was a first for the township, and program director Bill Ryder said the response was very good.

“Overall, our first season was successful and we are grateful to all the patrons who visited and the vendors who participated. We are looking to add more vendors next season,” said Ryder.

The Hampton Farmer’s Market was held every Wednesday beginning in June, from 5 to 7 p.m., at the community center parking lot off of McCully Road in Hampton Township.

Ryder said while 16 vendors registered to participate in the market this season, an average of 10 to 11 per week were there to sell their products.

Shoppers could enjoy a variety of vendors, including local farms, wines, homemade soaps, a bakery, olive oil and bread, to name a few.

“Even in September, there has been new interest,” said Ryder, including a tea/coffee vendor and a fresh flower florist signing up.

“Wednesday’s were good to us this season,” said Ryder. With only a rare thunder or brief rain, no days needed cancellation, said Ryder.

He said the market will return next season and any changes needed will be made in the off-season.

Council member Carolynn Johnson said the farmer’s market has been a request of the community for years.

“I was happy to see that we were able to attract a variety of vendors,” said Johnson.

“My personal goal this year was to try something new each time I attended, so I enjoyed looking for vegetables that you might not find at a grocery store.”

She said ideas have been tossed around for next season’s event, such as a kids’ vendor day or a trunk sale to coincide with the market. But nothing has been set. Overall, Johnson said not only was it a great way to gain access to local produce and goods but also a “great community event that allows people to interact with other residents beyond their own neighborhoods.”

Council member Bethany Blackburn said she’s impressed with all the recent community activities being offered, whether it’s the farmer’s market, Coffee Conversations with the Manager, Christmas in July, or Hampton’s first Dog Swim Day held on Sept. 9.

That event drew in approximately 110 dogs, said Ryder. The pups enjoyed their pool day venturing off the diving board to fetch toys and splashing in the water. And there were no “poo” accidents to report, he said.

“The township would like to thank all the dogs and families who participated and BelaCoop Animal Hospital of North Park for providing first aid for the event (as) several injuries arose,” said Ryder.