Vendors and merchants will gather Saturday at the Whitley County Courthouse Square for the opening day of the countyâ€™s Farmerâ€™s Market.
The seasonal market will feature a variety of baked goods and crafts, as well as vegetables, plants and fruits each Saturday from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Market Master Chris Lilly said the market has some new features this year, as well as some patron favorites. â€śWe have added food trucks and carts so those at the market can get something to eat,â€ť said Lilly. â€śThere are a lot of farmers who are returning this year, and we are always excited to have new vendors with vegetables and plants.â€ť
This year, the market is led by a board, which includes some vendors, as well as Whitley County Chamber of Commerce members.
â€śThe board will help to take some of the pressure off Chris so he can take care of the vendors,â€ť said Doug Brown, Chamber of Commerce executive director. â€śWe arenâ€™t taking anything away from the farmers. This is still very much their market, we just want to make it bigger and better.â€ť
Once again, Parkview Whitley Hospital will be a sponsor for the market. Lilly said entertainment is being sought out, as well as someone who would like to volunteer to coordinate the talent.
Government assistance is added to the market for some participating vendors who use SNAP benefits, a food voucher program.
â€śThis just gives residents another way to get quality food to their table,â€ť Lilly said. â€śIt benefits the vendors as well.â€ť
A ribbon-cutting ceremony is planned for the opening day at the Courthouse gazebo. â€śItâ€™s early in the season, so there wonâ€™t be a large selection of vegetables, but our farmers have been working to provide products all year round. There should be a lot of plants this weekend. Itâ€™s good timing with Motherâ€™s Day this Sunday.â€ť