Applications for city farmer’s market go live

Published 6:02 am Friday, February 3, 2017

Star Photo/Curtis Carden The parking lot located on East F Street will be the home of the new farmers market.

Star Photo/Curtis Carden
The parking lot located on East F Street will be the home of the new farmer’s market.

A dream by many in the community is just a couple months out from being a reality.

The Downtown Elizabethton Farmers Market will be unveiled Tuesday, May 2, in the parking lots on East F Street near First Christian Church and the Elizabethton Police Department after receiving approval from the City Council last month.

With final rules and bylaws now in place, the Downtown Elizabethton Farmers Market Association now has applications available for potential vendors looking to take part in the multi-month event.

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Josh McKinney, with the association, added it’s been a busy process but the excitement is reaching a fever pitch with the grand opening right around the bend.

“Things are moving very fast,” McKinney said following Thursday’s Carter County Community Advisory Board meeting. “We’ve had great, outpouring support from the different partners of this association, the City of Elizabethton, UT-Extension … all of our partners. It’s so crazy because since the information that this is happening has gone out, there’s been all kinds of farmers and vendors contacting us wanting more information.

“It took us a little while to get the rules and bylaws in place, but now that’s finalized, we’re now able to get the applications out,” he continued. “We want to get that information back in as soon as possible so we can begin planning for our May 2 launch and make sure we have our vendors where they need to be.”

Applications for the market are available by visiting the United Way of Elizabethton Carter County website — — or different businesses and organizations located in Historic Downtown Elizabethton, including Cottage Boutique, The Dressing Room, Blue River Studio and the Elizabethton/Carter County Public Library.

The application is free of charge to fill out. Costs to be part of the market will be handled following the completion of the application.

Once an application is approved, fees for the market include $15 for membership into the association (optional), $5 single-day pass and $100 seasonal pass that includes membership into the association, 27 weeks in the market and the option to reserve a booth space.

The market will kick off on May 2 and last until October 31. Patrons will be able to take advantage of the market from 5 to 8 p.m. each Tuesday. Vendors will be encouraged to be at their location at 4 p.m. to allow enough time to set up before the influx of foot traffic.

The space size is 12’ X 10’ and vendors must a provide their own chairs, according to the application. All products must have been grown within 100 miles of the market location and 75 percent must be either home-grown or locally sourced. Craft items at the markets must be handcrafted by the maker and may represent only 10 percent of the items sold at your booth.

McKinney and Cheri Tinney, chairperson for the association, stated the market will address a bevy of facets for the community, including tourism, spotlighting the nonprofit sector, and highlighting the history and heritage of the area while promoting healthy living and lifestyles to the public. During the planning phase, members of the CAB sent out a survey to the public that offered different ideas and asked for opinions about the market.

“We’ve had a lot of questions about why Tuesday,” McKinney said. “It’s such a convenient time for vendors at other markets to be able to bring their produce. A lot of times, produce will just get thrown away. Those vendors will have produce available on a Tuesday, but wouldn’t have a place to sell it. I think we’re really hitting a sweet spot with the vendors that will be able to sell at our market for that specific day.”