Yesterday was Opening Day and I think overall it was a great success. Our new location was a big hit with both vendors and customers alike. We were a full house yesterday with 16 vendors on site and a customer count of almost 500! There was a lot of traffic going down Chatham St. and people were definitely trying to see what was going on. I can’t wait until we get some signage up!
Mayor Harold Weinbrecht came and officially declared our 2014 season open. His short words on health and fitness and the importance of eating healthy and local were on point and we greatly appreciate him coming out. I’d like to see the Mayor in attendance at our market more often just to shop, but more importantly to show his support for the market. Perhaps having Fortnight Brewing as a vendor will help… I hear he’s a beer geek. :)
<— I like this picture of Mayor Weinbrecht speaking because of how intent the pirates are listening.
Our vendor turn out this Saturday was really great. We had many returning vendors this season including Spahr’s Produce Farms, Parker Farm & Vineyard, Custom Confections, and Mind Your Own Beeswax just to name a few. We also had some new vendors. Good Grace’s Dog Treats was very well received. Every dog in Cary, it seemed, was dragging its owner over to Good Grace’s table. There were some very happy pups at market. Good Grace’s had a beautiful display too.
As I already mentioned, Fortnight Brewery was in attendance yesterday. They are new to our market and new to Cary. When I met with Fortnight they said something that really hit home with me- they are the only *CARY* brewery. This struck a chord with me because it seems like I say that we are the *CARY Downtown Farmers’ Market* a lot. Yes, there are three markets in Cary, and each market is a good market and has unique and wonderful things to offer, but I feel it’s important to remember that when it comes to supporting Cary- Cary businesses, Cary residents, Cary life- we are fully committed to that end, as is Fortnight Brewery.
I really wish I’d gotten a picture of the pirates singing with Fortnight. It was definitely picture perfect. I guess I was too busy talking.
Coon Rock Farms and Queen B Farms are also new vendors that were in attendance this Saturday. I’m excited to say they both have a variety of meats to offer. I was impressed with Coon Rock’s cooked sausage and their overall display. Queen B has turkeys which is exciting because I always have a big Thanksgiving Day family blow out and this year I can get a turkey from someone I know and trust.
We are really happy that The Cultured Cow Creamery came back this season with their variety of cheeses, and we are ecstatic to have added Paradox Farm Creamery with their goats cheese products. I’d never had goats cheese, but it was really good. Plus, they had the cutest little goat statue on their table. I don’t know why that amused me. I wonder if customers were as amused.
The new Cary downtown manager, Ted Boyd, was at market with his daughter, a real cutie (the daughter, not the manager… I mean, he’s ok, but… oh. nevermind.) Anyway, Ted was very much an integral part of our securing the new location. He’s also been a huge asset to us as far as knowledge and understanding about markets and how they work and marketing. Ted won our CDFM t-shirt for sharing all of our Facebook posts and Twitter feeds. (I will refrain from discussing the frustrations of learning this whole social media thing.) I think even if he hadn’t been so very proactive in our social media realm, we owed him a t-shirt just for all he’s done for us so far. I’m really pleased with the positive relationship I think we’re building with Ted and the Town of Cary.
I’m going to leave you with a bunch of pics of the highlights of yesterday. After months of prepping and hard work it was really nice to see opening day really come together and be a success. I had a very brief moment around 11:00 a.m. to sit back and just watch the bustling activity of market. The vendors talking with customers, the kids getting their faces painted, the families enjoying a hot cross bun or cinnamon roll and coffee, the pirates being truly entertaining… the cool spring air showing signs of the blooming plants and fresh season to come. I smiled and realized that I love my vendors. I love our customers. I love our town. I love our little market.
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