New farmers market in the works for Noethern Tier

ROUSES POINT Geri Favreau likes farmers markets. So much, in fact, she wants to establish one in the village of Rouses Point. The village resident has been in conversations with village officials about bringing a farmers market to downtown Lake Street in Rouses Park. The idea behind the initiative is that the Lake Champlain village can offer something unique for the area. Theres no farmers markets north of Plattsburgh, said Favreau. I just thought it would be a really, really good fit for Rouses Point. Were right on the lake and near the borders to Canada and Vermont, so we get a lot of traffic. The placement of the market in downtown would be key, said Favreau, giving market-goers the opportunity to visit and support other downtown businesses when doing their shopping. The option of hosting the market at the Rouses Point Civic Center was also discussed, but Favreau said since the center is located further north on Lake Street away from other businesses like Lakeside Coffee and Sandys Deli, the likelihood is people would shop only at the market before getting into their cars and leaving the village. I think by having the market downtown, it would be better for the businesses, Favreau said. The civic center, however, would make for an ideal location in the event of inclement weather, she added. The main thing Favreau said she is interested in at this point is the interest of others in having a local market. Preliminary discussions shes had with vendors who participate in farmers markets in the city of Plattsburgh have been favorable, she said, with some already showing interest in participating in either a Thursday or Friday market. Favreau said she has been told by other market organizers having at least four vendors commit to participating for a season would likely mean the success of the market. They said word would spread from there and more people would be likely to come, said Favreau. What were going to need from our vendors is some kind of commitment. Right now, were really just looking for interest. In addition to Northern New York vendors, the market would also be ideal for vendors in neighboring communities like Alburg, Vt., said Favreau, who typically travel more than 20 miles to participate in their nearest farmers market in South Hero. A market in Rouses Point would be only five miles away, leading Favreau to believe vendors from Alburg would be more interested in traveling to this side of the border. I think this could really end up giving the village some good exposure, said Favreau. Ideally, Favreau said she and Debbie Wilcox, the markets anticipated co-manager, would like to see the market begin by next July. That would be the time of year when the market could best begin to capitalize on summer traffic from Quebec and Vermont and also when the village hosts its annual Fourth of July celebration. Other issues such as vendor fees, the markets hours of operation and how late the market would run into the fall season will also be examined once information is received from potential vendors. Favreau said vendors who grow their own produce are being sought as well as photographers, artists and musicians who would be interested in providing entertainment and culture for the market. Those interested may contact Favreau at 297-2064 or via e-mail at gerifavreau@yahoo.com.

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