Homer Farmers Market opens its 25th season Saturday

The Homer Farmers Market has always prioritized farms and farmers first

Back in 1999 the spring was warm. It even hit 65 degrees mid-May. It couldn’t have been better timing, because plans to start home or Farmers Market had already been cast. The intrepid first Homer Farmers Market was held next door to where it is now on some tables in the parking lot of what is now Uncle Herbs.

That was 25 years ago. The vendors at that first farmers market did not open Memorial Day, nor did the Market last until October. But even in those early years, there was a vision that was laid out and eventually fulfilled.

One of the original visionaries of the market was Sharon Roufa of Two Sisters. She grew up on the East Coast admiring the Amish markets, where you could find homegrown as well as homemade items straight from the farm. The Homer Farmers Market has always prioritized farms and farmers first. As it has grown, it has managed to maintain that homegrown feel.

As the number of tables grew, so did the variety of wares available. Eventually, someone made a music stand for folks who came to perform. Eventually, someone took on child care and provided youth activities. Over the years, folks have done craft demonstrations and chef’s demos. The whole orientation of the booths at the Market has even turned 180 degrees from the way it was once lined up.

A lot of different people have come and gone over the years through the Farmers Market. Some have moved on to open their own brick-and-mortar store like the Bagel Shop. Some booths like the Wild North Photography booth may be gone, but their photographs now line the walls of the Islands and Ocean Visitor Center. Many of the children who were in those kids activities now have grown up and moved on.

This Saturday marks the first Market of 2024 and the Homer Farmers Market’s 25th Anniversary. So, head on down to Ocean Drive this Saturday from 10 a.m. 3 p.m. and Wednesday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Enjoy and help kick off the Market’s 25th year.

Kyra Wagner is the Homer Farmers Market ‘s biggest fan and now also board president.