Even though the rain came down Saturday morning, the Homer Farmers Market still had plenty of folks streaming in. What is it that will bring people out despite the weather?
Relationships. We all have different relationships that bring us down to Ocean Drive every week. For me, I love seeing what’s new and what our farms are able to put out regardless of the cool weather.
For some, it’s a specific farmer or a specific item. “Do you have any garlic yet?” one customer asked Lori at Synergy Gardens this week. “I just finished mine.”
And farmers notice. A couple of weeks ago, Dan left Luba’s Garden booth and went down the aisle to the Will Grow Farms booth to ask Paul if he had seen a particular elderly customer who wore a particular hat. Even though they didn’t know his name, they both noticed that he hadn’t been coming around this year. “Hope he’s doing okay. Maybe he moved.”
Marsha Rouggly from Sweet Berries Jam and Jellies had remarked to me a couple of weeks ago that she was running low on egg cartons. But this week when I brought her mine, I could see that she had a stack already in the back of her car. She has long been a part of the conduit between the customers who love farm fresh eggs and the producers who can recycle the cartons back into the system. She suggested that I mention folks can always drop them off with her at the market or at the Wagon Wheel anytime.
Not all of the relationships are that long and deep. The market is the perfect place for visitors to get a taste of Homer, whether it’s food or culture. In one visit, you can see local artists like Mari in the Sky or potter Maygen Lotscher. It’s the place to choose your item to take home, whether it’s the jewelry of Claire O’Donnell or a signature wool hat from Jen King.
So come on down to the Homer Farmers Market on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. or Wednesday from 2-5 p.m. on Ocean Drive and build your local relationships.
Kyra Wagner is the coordinator of Sustainable Homer and the Homer Farmers Market’s biggest fan.