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Spring market starts on wet foot

New Spring Farmers' Market runs Saturday mornings through June 14; summer market runs July-September

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MARK DUBOVEC/THISWEEKNEWS
Leah Sidelinger of Grove City samples goods from Eban's Bakehouse at the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce's Spring Farmers' Market with an assist from her father, Travis Sidelinger. Umbrellas were standard equipment for the first spring market, marked by rain and gray skies most of the morning Saturday, May 10.

Spring weather greeted the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce's first Spring Farmers Market.

The chamber hosted the first of what it plans to make a new annual market Saturday, May 10, in the Grove City Town Center.

The day was marked by gray skies and continual rain showers but vendors turned out to brave the gloom, selling gluten-free baked goods, bison meat, herbal teas, jams, produce and more.

"The water was almost to the top curb," said Mike Scott, a vendor for Ohio Bison Farm, which is located in Grove City and owned by Bob and Bev Sexton.

"They've got between 20 and 30 bison at any given time," Scott said.

Scott said he has lived in Grove City his entire life, and that's why he enjoys working at the farmers markets.

"When you've lived here all your life, you pretty much know everybody," he said. "I enjoy talking and visiting with everybody."

Ohio Bison Farm sets up at a number of farmers markets in the area, as does Eban's Bakehouse, a gluten-free commercial bakery run by Adrienne Novak and Eric Braddock. The business has no storefront but has accounts with retailers all over Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

"We've been growing exponentially," Novak said.

Eban's Bakehouse also works at farmers markets in Clintonville, New Albany and Worthington, as well as the Pearl Market in downtown Columbus.

"We stay pretty busy," Novak said. "We love supporting the local economy and community. Farmers markets -- they're important for us."

Other vendors weren't as experienced with farmers markets.

"This is my first farmers market," said Diane Rizzi, owner of White Dove Herbal Teas. "I'm hoping to expand my business ... (and) I'm hoping to teach people there's a good way to be healthy."

White Dove sells a variety of medicinal and herbal teas.

"We grow it out of our back yard," Rizzi said. "When we need to supplement our herbs, we get them from an organic company."

Another vendor was making its Grove City market debut.

"This is our first time here at this market," said Amy Smith of Urban Spreads, a home-based operation out of Franklinton. "We are spreading our wings."

Urban Spreads sells jams, cupcakes, pies and cookies. "It's all home-produced," Smith said.

Also home-produced were Cori's Confections, owned by Cori Parsons.

"It allows me to be at home with my kids," she said. "Eventually, I'd like to open a cafe."

Parsons was assisted by her son, Wesley, 9.

"Whatever she doesn't sell, we get to eat," he said. "That's the best part of it."

Grove City's Spring Farmers Market will run from 8 a.m. to noon every Saturday through June 14. The summer market begins July 12 and runs to Sept. 13, with the same hours, also in the Town Center.

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