Vendors at the Hilliard Farmers Market say they like the market's location and its customers.

Vendors at the Hilliard Farmers Market say they like the market's location and its customers.

"It's a good crowd, and they bring up lots of different questions that some of the other markets don't," said Vicky Hinschlager of Oink Moo Cluck Farms. The Johnstown-based farm sells pork, beef and chicken at six farmers markets.

"You have more of a conversation with people instead of them just wanting to buy," she said. "They're more interested in knowing where the beef comes from, instead of, 'do you have chicken?'"

"The farm market has been going really well, other than the weather. (Either) it's a little too hot or it's raining," said Alexa Coughlin of Wishwell Farms, whose Bellefontaine-grown bi-color corn was being bought by the bagful near Main Street. "It's not hard to park here, and everyone has been pretty nice. It's a little slower pace so I can talk to people."

Tom Duncan, the Pie Man, said he's signed up for the rest of the season for Hilliard's market. Duncan, who lives in Powell, said he sells pies like peach-blueberry and strawberry-rhubarb at the Powell Farmers Market as well.

"This one is a lot busier than the Powell market," Duncan said. "It's a little easier access. Powell's is set back in the parking lot of their municipal building. It's nice, there's good parking availability, but the problem is the traffic on Powell Road is so bad you don't want to get off of it."

Some vendors take credit cards, like Bellefontaine-based Blue Jacket Dairy. Julie George said this was her first time working the Hilliard Farmer Market.

She's usually working in the company's cheese caverns assisting in aging cheeses like her favorite, the Ludlow.

"I do Westerville on Wednesdays and I'm headed to New Albany on Thursdays, so I go all over the place," George said as she offered samples. "What do I like about farmers markets? The people. I love meeting new people."

Paul Sandstrom, of Oh Lather Soap Works in Clintonville, said it takes him two hours to make a bar of soap and three weeks for it to cure. Sandstrom likes the farm market for "the breeze and the friendly customers. It's meeting people and talking about my product."

Hirsch Fruit Farm of Chillicothe had the reddest tomatoes possible, along with cukes, zukes, yellow squash and berries. Co-owner Mike Hirsch told a customer buying a bag of peaches that most fruit farms east of the Rockies have to be non-organic.

"Hilliard is good to us," Hirsch said between customers. "The people have supported us. We started first day last year when it first started, and we've been here ever since. They've responded well."

When one of the help dropped a customer's tomato that was so firm it didn't dent, Brent Rhoads of Rhoads Farm Market in Circleville gave the customer an extra one and told her to use the one that fell first. He also slipped in an ear of his corn into people's bags as a friendly comparison to another vendor's corn. (Both tasted good.)

"You have wonderful organizers," Rhoads said. "Sarah Painter and Sandy Caruthers are two great ladies. They work with the farmers very well. The people are so friendly.

"It's a great community. They have lots of families. They appreciate fresh fruits and vegetables. That's what makes it nice for us. We have a lot of repeat customers because they know our quality and variety."

Diane Bobka of Rio Delights in Westerville was selling her homemade Brazilian cornbread and other products, with samba music playing softly in the background. "Today is slow," Bobka said, but "it seems like the people here are really open to new stuff. I see more people coming back every week."

"The people who come to the market are knowledgeable about what they're looking for," said Dale Benedict of Honey Health Farms in Marysville. "They come intending to buy and support us. The community is friendly, helpful, and it's one of the nicest markets I go to."

"This is my second year," said Ann Marie Wiley of Jade Clare's Canine Cookies & Treats, who makes her homemade treats in New Albany. "The community is very supportive. They were last year, and they are again this year. Last year was the first year, and people seemed so genuinely grateful that it was up and running. "

Across from a tent promoting Old Hilliardfest near the parking lot was Brenda's Cakes. "We like the customers," said Brenda Hoye. "It's really interesting to see the same people week after week, and the community has been really supportive. They tell me what they want to see (me make) next week."

The Hilliard Farm Market continues at 4-7 p.m. Tuesdays through August at the corner of Center and Main streets.