Hundreds visit farmers market for promotional event

Published 8:37 am Wednesday, August 9, 2017

With a solar eclipse around the bend, hundreds took full advantage of an extraordinary opportunity presented at the First Christian Church parking lot.

Downtown Elizabethton Farmers Market vendors were greeted with a bevy of individuals Tuesday looking to see the different items for sale and pick up a pair of solar eclipse glasses offered by the Elizabethton/Carter County Public Library.

The library has an allotted amount of glasses that are being distributed at three different events. Along with the market event, the library is offering glasses at the August 20 Elizabethton Twins game at Joe O’Brien Field and August 21 at Kiwanis Park for the library’s solar eclipse viewing party.

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Incorporating a favorite item like the glasses with different local events encourages citizens to see what there is locally, according to Children’s Librarian Ashlee Williams.

“We’re hoping the popularity of the solar eclipse will encourage people to visit the library and the different attractions we have in the city,” Williams said Tuesday at the market. “We want people to come to the various events like the farmers market. We hope people enjoy their time here today and want to keep coming back each time. It helps our local economy, our local farmers and helps keep the farmers market going.”

Donica Krebs, market manager, said community involvement events like Tuesday brings an exciting atmosphere to the market.

“We can tell when we have more community involvement, the city gets more excited about things,” Krebs said. “We’re really open to have community organizations to come in and have these types of events. With the library, they’re offering glasses and a book about health and that’s very important. Having these kinds of partnerships are great and really gets everyone involved.”

As the popularity for the glasses ensues, Williams added it was nice to see demand continue for the market, too.

“I’m very excited to see the growth with the market,” Williams said. “Especially with (the Carter County Community Advisory Board) being part of it in the early going. It’s just grown and grown, and we hope to see this keep getting bigger each.”

“We gave out glasses to each of the vendors,” she continued. “People that are coming here to get glasses either didn’t know we had a market or didn’t know the variety of vendors there are here.”

Busy has been the word of the market for its inaugural year, but Krebs added she wouldn’t have it any other way. DEFM averages 150 to 450 visitors per each Tuesday night and is maxed out on vendor space.

“We had a tough time telling vendors no, but we’re completely booked,” Krebs said.

It’s never too early to look ahead for the coming year, and the market manager added steps are in place to make next year’s installment even better.

It would be great to have my community involvement planned before the start of next year” Krebs said. “Since we know it’s going well, we hope to see more people get involved in the early stages. We also want to incorporate more events next year. Seasonal events like a blueberry festival or tomato festival would be fantastic. We also want to thank the city for providing us with electricity … that was a great help for us.”

The farmers market will continue every Tuesday from 5 to 8 p.m. until October 31. Performers can also be involved in the market by contacting Blue River Studio, located downtown. To learn more about the market or to get involved, visit the Downtown Elizabethton Farmers Market Facebook page.