The Warren County Farmers Market is really starting to add some flavor to the local economy.
Market manager Mary Cantrell says financial estimates put the Farmers Market’s economic impact for all of last year at $425,000.
“You wouldn’t believe the amount of money that goes through the market,” said Cantrell. “We’re expecting just as big a year this year. We’re having a bunch of promotions and giving away lots of stuff.”
Farmers Market activity begins next weekend when a vendor yard sale is set for Saturday, March 26. Cantrell said so many of the vendors live in rural areas, it’s difficult for yard sales at their homes to generate much traffic. While the emphasis next weekend will be on the yard sale, Cantrell says she expects some plants to be available.
The first official market day is set for Saturday, April 2. Vendor attendance is usually light in the beginning before reaching its peak in mid-summer. Cantrell said the market typically has between 35 and 40 vendors during the height of growing season, “which makes us larger than the Farmers Market in Cookeville,” she said.
Pork producer Martin Grissom of M&M Farms is among the vendors set to sell at the market. He raises the pigs on his Rock Island farm and also sells eggs.
Cattle farmer Robert Mullican of Woodbury returns with “the best beef I’ve ever tasted,” according to Cantrell.
Sure to be an early hit are the Turner brothers from the Green Hill area. They should have strawberries ready in April and they sold 200 gallons of them in just one day last year.
To satisfy your sweet tooth, baker Ruby Huber and her daughter, Melinda, are crowd favorites with their cookies, pies, cinnamon rolls, and bread.
John Brown has developed a following for his hydroponic lettuce.
As for special promotions, Cantrell said Strawberry Day is set for May 14, Squash Cake Day is set for June 11, and Little Mr. and Miss Farmer Day is set for June 25. The Little Mr. and Miss Farmer Day is a contest open to newborns to age 10 to see who can dress as the cutest farmer.
Later in the season, Corn Day and Watermelon Day have the market crawling with customers.
“We sell only Tennessee-grown products,” said Cantrell.