Last summer was a tough one for the Battle Creek Farmer’s Market.  Brigette Leach, Secretary-Treasurer for the Battle Creek Farmers Market Association said with the lockdown, and many people working from home, it was just about impossible to keep the market going.   “COVID hit some of our vendors really hard,” said Leach.  “There are some long-term traditional vendors at our market who won’t be returning for various family reasons.”  She said the pandemic also resulted in the market limiting the type of vendors who were allowed to be there.  “We’ve labeled this our ‘year of recovery.’

“Farmers markets have traditionally been great places to start food-related businesses,’ said Leach. We know many in the community need to recover from the negative impacts of COVOD-19, who want to start a new business to replace a job or to start a new business as a side gig or need an additional way to grow an existing business. If the Battle Creek Farmers Market can be a venue to help people start and grow small businesses of many types, we want to be that venue.”

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“In the past, we have focused on Michigan grown and Michigan made food and products. In light of the challenges we are all facing, the Association and market management have decided to increase the categories of vendors who can participate in the farmers market and Food Truck Friday events.” In addition to food and prepared food businesses, categories now include artisans and craft persons, as well as businesses other than farms, food, and arts and crafts, including a limited number of direct marketing or multi-level marketing businesses. “Of course, preference will be given to Michigan-based farms and food businesses, but we also want to have a good mix of other businesses for our customers to enjoy. The community has been good to our farmer’s market vendors over the years, if we can find an effective way to give back, then we want to do that.”

Leach says they’ve worked with Kellogg Arena and contracted with area bands and musicians for a variety of music at the market.

Farmers Market and Food Truck Friday Hours

The Wednesday Farmers Market opens on May 5th, running through October 27th with market hours from 9 am to 1 pm. The Friday Farmers Market and Food Truck Friday kicks off on May 14th, running through September 24th, with hours from 5-8. “Before COVID-19 restrictions we had great success with Food Truck Friday events. We want to continue, even help increase, the opportunity for downtown events and add to the excitement of the new downtown Social District, so we’ve increased Food Truck Friday from a monthly event to a weekly Friday event.  We have plenty of outdoor space so that everyone can safely distance while enjoying themselves.”

This Wednesday, Leach says there will probably be fresh asparagus and maybe some rhubarb and fresh bread and kettle corn.  There will be some bedding plants, and a new food truck, from Fat Mike’s BBQ in Augusta, will be there with breakfast and lunch.

  • Battle Creek Farmer’s Market
  • Festival Market Square, 25 McCamly St S, Battle Creek
  • Wednesdays 9 pm-1 pm
  • Fridays 5pm-8pm
  • Food Truck Fridays Start May 14 and continue each week

 

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