Youth learn vending rules, skills at Homer Farmers Market

Thea James was five years old when her mom started selling Homer Hilltop Farm produce at the Homer Farmers Market; now she is a sophomore in high school. She often mans the booth on her own and was able to tell me, quite professionally, that the 40 bouquets of tulips that they brought were the last of that round. Next week they will be bringing ranunculus bouquets.

The skills that Thea has are skills that your kids can also practice at the Market. This next Wednesday, June 28, is Kids Vending Day. Anyone under 18 years old is welcome to sell, free of charge, the products of their agricultural or entrepreneurial endeavors. It’s a great way to engage youth in our community while helping develop social and math skills.

One of the first skills that they get to learn is how to deal with rules and requirements. First of all, they will need to fill out a Kids Membership Form that explains what they intend to sell. Since this is about building the skills of the kids themselves, all produce or products need to have been harvested or produced by the kids. They will have to follow the guidelines in the Market Policy Handbook for all craft standards and Cottage Food sales. These are rules adults must follow, so the kids will have to learn them too.

Once they have a plan for a qualified product, they are ready to plan out their sales platform. They may need a table (6 feet max) or a tent or a display shelf, depending on the product. Whatever they need will have to get set up after they check in with the Market Manager at 1:30 p.m. and get assigned a location.

Like real vendors, no one is allowed to set up after the Market starts at 2 p.m.

Then the fun begins. What surprising talents do our kids have to show off this week?

So head on down to the Market this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for the regular fare, but don’t forget to come support our local youth vending on Wednesday from 2-5 p.m.