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Great Falls Farmers Market Returns to Village Centre

Opening day set for Saturday, April 28, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

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This photo was taken in 2008, when the market had moved from St. Francis Episcopal Church (2007) to the Village Center (2008).

The Great Falls Community Farmers Market is opening on Saturday, April 28, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at the parking lot at the Walker Road entrance to the Great Falls Village Centre -- where it was the year before last.

The purpose of the local community farmers market is to bring growers, producers, makers, and crafters directly in touch with local residents so they can buy from the people who are personally responsible for the generation of agricultural produce and products, crafts, and other hand-made or original offerings. A second purpose is to provide an access to a circle of residents who can provide the comments and feedback that encourage small businesses to grow. Jennifer Falcone of Jennifer's Pastries declares on her website that she moved from winning pie baking contests to launching a baking business because of her participation in the Great Falls Community Farmers Market. Chris and Sara Guerre, owners of the On The Go Gourmet truck that has been present at the Great Falls farmers market from the very beginning, now reside on Laura Nichols Hidden Spring Farm and they are tending a huge "organic equivalent" (i.e. not yet certified) vegetable garden on local Great Falls soil. They will pick their crops within 24 hours before arriving at the market so that the community can enjoy the vibrancy of immediately picked produce. And finally, the farmers market is a way for Great Falls residents to enjoy the village center on a Saturday, where community news can be posted on a bulletin board, where friends and family can meet and greet each others, take a stroll, have a chat, and experience the joy of wholesome nutrition, and feel the energy of producers in intimate touch with their offerings.

The organizers are in search of 10 volunteer interns who want to learn about bringing things to market, village communications, and market logistics. They are assembling an Advisory Council of members to represent the community in overseeing the market. They also invite local producers to submit an application to be considered as a vendor as our market.

Originally launched in May 2007, by St. Francis Episcopal Church under the leadership of Rob Watters, the Farmers Market was taken over by Brogue Charities and Mike Kearney in the middle of its first season. It had two additional successful years at parking lot at the Walker Road entrance of the Great Falls Village Centre before moving to the Village Green Day School parking lot last year. Since there was only one entrance and exit, residents found that space was difficult to maneuver, even though it was a very beautiful location. Mike Kearney is now passing the baton to Kathleen Murphy, who has set up the Great Falls Community Farmers Market, and is returning the location to the previous Village Centre location, thanks to the thoughtful hospitality and consideration of Jorge Kifoury of Linden Development, Inc., the owner. An application is being made to set up the farmers market as a non-profit in service to the nurturing of our community of Great Falls.