From staff reports
The Winston County Farmers Market in Louisville began its fourth year of service to the county June 16, 2016 at the Louisville Coliseum.
The Farmers Market was certified by the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce as part of the Mississippi Certified Farmers Market Program in 2013.
In the three years, the Louisville Farmer’s market has become a permanent part of the community, drawing anywhere from 200 to 300 customers each Thursday from 3:30 to 5 p.m.
The first week of the market drew six vendors with five volunteers assisting, followed by six vendors and seven volunteers in the second week.
Farmers’ Market Manager Jean Harper has been a staple of the market, and has been there since its inception. Harper is the unofficial face of the market, greeting the customers attending as well as managing the many vendors that visit the market.
“Customers have really seem to appreciate the opportunity to purchase fresh home grown vegetables, especially tomatoes,” Harper said.
Harper also mentioned how value added products are available at the market as well.
Harper also wants farmers in the area and surrounding area to know that the market is available for them as a way to supplement their incomes based on the increased demand for fresh produce.
Besides the produce, Harper has found joy in assisting the customers and conversing with the vendors.
“Most vendors and customers enjoy interacting with each other talking and sharing recipes and other things,” Harper said. “It is a great way to fellowship.”
Not only does the Farmer’s Market provide fresh produce, it also provides opportunity for students of the school district to volunteer and earn community service hours at the market.
Harper and Janice Hopkins invite everyone to come and stop by the Farmer’s Market every Thursday this summer from 3:30-5 p.m. For more information call Harper at 662-736-8004 or Hopkins at 662-705-2019.