Pickerington Times-Sun

Expanded Farmers Market set to open June 5

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Locally-grown fresh produce, home-baked goods, wood-fired pizza, free-range poultry, handmade leather belts, children's crafts, music and a whole lot more can be found during the Olde Pickerington Farmers' Market.

And, organizers say that's just a sampling of what the new and improved event has to offer those who come down to shop, browse or simply mill about and enjoy the open-air atmosphere.

The Olde Pickerington Farmers' Market will kick off a second season June 5 at its Town Square Drive location (89 N. Center St.) in Olde Pickerington Village.

The weekly outdoor event will take place -- rain or shine -- every Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. through Sept. 25.

New Manager Leslie Markworth said she is excited about the event's expanded offerings this season and hailed it as an up and coming must-see destination for the region.

"I think this is going to be the premier farmers' market in Fairfield County," Markworth said.

"We'll have our old vendors as well as some new vendors with new products and we're receiving inquiries daily," she said.

In all, 27 vendors have signed on to peddle their goods and wares at the market, a substantive increase over the 18 vendors that were there at peak times in the 2013 season.

"We are definitely ramping up," Markworth said.

"There is a whole new layout and configuration this year.

"We're utilizing the whole space and there are several vendors with multiple spaces so we actually have 38 spaces (filled)," she said.

New vendors include Silver Bridge Coffee from Gallipolis, Ohio, which will sell coffee by the pound, and Brown Brothers Farms, known throughout Ohio for its healthy fare.

Those seeking fresh animal products will have more variety this year, Markworth said.

"(Brown Brothers) sells non-GMO, free-range turkey and chicken meat," she said. "They will be there in addition to Falters Meats and Berry Family Farm, which were there last year."

"We also have two honey vendors this year, selling raw and varietal honey and also infused honey, which is infused with various herbs and spices," she added.

The Olde Pickerington Farmers' Market will offer monthly children's crafts and activities as well as provide a venue in which the PCMA Food Pantry "can promote its services to the community."

Picnic tables will be set up for those who want to enjoy some outdoor dining on-premises.

Pompeii's Inferno will offer wood-fired pizza baked to order and "A Taste to Remember Catering" will have both hot and cold items available for dine-in or take home.

"We have a lot of new bakers joining us this year selling cake pops, cinnamon rolls and scones," Markworth said.

Maggie Arendt of the Olde Pickerington Village Business Association said Markworth was hired as a part-time market manager out of a desire to upgrade and expand a market that drew more than 10,000 people to downtown Pickerington last year.

"It was a lot of work," Arendt said.

"We have five volunteers that did the market last year, we decided we had to get somebody to help us. We're so glad to have Leslie," she said.

For a complete list of vendors and additional information about the Olde Pickerington Farmers' Market, go to the OPVBA website at www.pickeringtonvillage.com or call 614-321-8221.

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