Springfield moves toward year-round farmers market downtown

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Springfield moves toward year-round farmers market downtown

The State House Inn, which is newly renovated and under new ownership as of last year, is also the new home for both the Springfield Holiday Farmers Market and Winter Farmers Market. The move is intended to bring the city one step closer to the realization of a year-round farmers market on Adams Street.

The farmers markets will be held from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at the State House Inn, located at 101 E. Adams Street.

Market dates include:

Old Capitol Holiday Farmers Markets

Saturday before each holiday

Saturday, November 17, 9am -1pm

Saturday, December 22, 9am -1pm

Old Capitol Winter Farmers Markets

Third Saturday of each month January – April

Saturday, January 19, 9am -1pm

Saturday, February 1, 9am – 1pm

Saturday, March 16, 9am – 1pm

Saturday, April 20, 9am – 1pm

 

The Holiday and Winter Farmers Markets play an important role in the health and economic vitality of Springfield by filling the gap in year-round availability of local food. These post-summer markets give shoppers access to fresh produce and local proteins throughout the winter, keep food dollars in the Springfield economy and provide farmers with an outlet to market their products and earn income during the winter months.

Previously, both post-summer farmers markets, which are managed by local non-profit organization Illinois Stewardship Alliance, were held in separate locations. The Springfield Holiday Farmers Markets, now entering the 12th season, were held out at the State Fairgrounds in November and December, while their off-shoot, the two-year old Springfield Winter Farmers Markets, were held at the Third Presbyterian Church in the Enos Park neighborhood.

The move to the State House Inn not only brings the markets to within a block of the Old Capitol Farmers Market, which is also held on Adams Street, but rolls them under the Old Capitol Farmers Market umbrella for consistent marketing throughout the year.

“We’ve been looking for a way to move the post-summer markets closer to the Old Capitol Farmer Market for a while,” said Molly Gleason, communications director for Illinois Stewardship Alliance, “but finding the right space and funding have always been an issue. It just makes sense that all of the farmers markets should be in the same place, and makes it a lot easier for the public to know where to connect with local farmers all year long.”

Jami Bonitz, sales and catering manager at the State House Inn added, “We are very interested in assisting in the progressive efforts of bringing our community together and working together to move Springfield forward.”

Last year, each of the Holiday Farmers Markets attracted over 1,000 shoppers and 40 vendors. The smaller Winter Farmers Markets, limited by space confinements, drew an average of 200 shoppers and 12 vendors.  The Alliance expects that the location change and continued partnership with the Old Capitol Farmers Market will help grow both markets, while also bringing more shoppers to the downtown area.

Farmer Chad Wallace, a vendor at all three Markets, said, “The off-season markets being held at the State House Inn could be beneficial for both farmers and consumers. The winter market will especially benefit since the larger venue can accommodate more vendors and attract new customers, which I hope will turn into increased sales for everyone.”

 

By |November 14th, 2018|Categories: Events|0 Comments

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