Farmers Market Place back for another season

Published 6:30 am Wednesday, May 26, 2021

At just a little before 4 p.m. Monday, vendors were busy setting up shop in preparation for the first day of the Farmers Market Place, a season that will carry through to late October.

The market has been in its current location, alongside the Spam Museum. Since 2013 and has enjoyed a popular experience with customers the entire way.

“We have a lot of really dedicated customers,” said vendor Karen VanderStoep. “But I think there are still a lot who don’t know about us.”

Mary Ulland, along with her husband Kirk, help organize the market on Mondays and Thursdays. During the market’s time there, Ulland said she’s seen plenty of people parade through the stalls of each vendor.

“Being downtown mostly,” Ulland said, attributing the success to the central location. “We get a lot of people from the Spam Museum and employees from downtown businesses will stop by.”

Farmers Market Place is in a position from this increased traffic to be able to raise its number of vendors from six to 12 this year and is currently accepting applications to be a part of the experience.

That experience is open rain or shine, barring severe weather and holidays.

Part of that experience is what’s available. People can find everything from jams and jellies, produce, clothing and other goods.

Mindy Christenson of Mama’s Gift Corner, based out of Bricelyn, is a three-year member of the Farmer’s Market Place, having met Mary and Kirk during a farmers market in Albert Lea.

She sells everything from produce to face masks.

“Kirk, Mary and Karen convinced me to join them over here and I’ve never looked back,” she said.

Farmers Market Place is open 4-6 p.m., Mondays and Thursdays, located at Third Avenue and Main Street NW. If you are a vendor who wishes to be a part of the market, visit https://farmersmarketplace.weebly.com/.

“I love the location,” VanderStoep said. “I love being here. Downtown has been very welcoming of us.”