Winter farmers market picking up speed in new venue

Farmers market now open every other Saturday at Charity Newsies HQ


Little by little, people are beginning to discover the Columbus Winter Farmers Market didn't leave Clintonville altogether.

It just moved to a new location, founder Cathy Rollison-Krist said.

The source for winter produce and other staples was launched five years ago by Delaware County residents Rollison-Krist and her husband. The operation had to move this year after outgrowing the previous venue, the Clintonville Woman's Club, which also could not guarantee availability of the facility on Saturdays, Rollison-Krist said.

One of the regular vendors at the market, who sells handmade soap, happens to be a member of Charity Newsies. After a meeting with the Indianola Avenue-based organization's vice president and drive chairman Chuck Rundio IV and other Charities Newsies officials, a deal was struck to move the Columbus Winter Farmers Market there on alternate Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., beginning in early November, Rollison-Krist said last week.

"It was a mutual agreement that would help both of us out," she said. "It was probably one of the greatest moves our market has made. They're a super group to work with and the facility is nice.

"Our customer base has been delighted with the move."

Remaining dates for the market, which generally has featured eight to 12 vendors each week, are Dec. 15, Jan. 5, Jan. 19, Feb. 2, Feb. 16, March 2 and March 16.

"Attendance is picking up," Rollison-Krist said. "It's educating our consumers that we have moved. Weekend by weekend, it's picking up.

"We have a nice variety. We try to have a little bit of everything at the market," she said. "Sometimes that's possible, sometimes it's not."

In addition to meats, honey, maple syrup, potatoes, carrots, other types of winter produce, cakes, cookies, hand-dipped chocolates, hot sauce and an array of handmade items, the winter farmers markets offer live music from local bands.

"We have some of the best bands in the Columbus area," Rollison-Krist said.

In addition to the rental fee the market pays to Charity Newsies, donations are accepted for the organization's operations during the every-other-Saturday gatherings.

"I guess you could say we scratch each other's backs," Rollison-Krist said. "It's an awesome cause."