Farmers’ market to move

By Corene Brisendine

The new City Commission unanimously approved an amended renewal of the Downtown Farmers’ Market contract Tuesday night.

Downtown Farmers’ Market, Inc. renews its contract each year, allowing it to use a parking lot downtown on Saturdays from April to October. On that site, which for years has been at Fifth andf Humboldt, local growers and entrepreneurs gather to sell their wares.

Because organizers say the market is outgrowing its usual location, the renewed contract permits the market to be moved to the corner of Third and Leavenworth Street….essentially the northwest edge of the Manhattan Town Center complex.

“While the old location of Fifth and Humboldt has served us well, with the current growth and interest in the market, we need a place that simply has more room,” said George LeRoux, president of Downtown Farmers’ Market of Manhattan. “The location of Third and Leavenworth has more room for vendors, better visibility to the public, and more parking for customers.”

The lot has been used as a storage area for ATA Buses, but they are being moved.

The Saturday market has become known for its fresh meats, vegetables and baked goods. In addition to selling food items, its roughly 40 vendors have included makers of hand-made jewelry, soaps, wood carvings and other crafts.

LeRoux said the Wednesday market will remain at its CiCo Park location, and the winter market in Pottorf Hall in CiCo Park will also remain.

The Saturday market operates from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. April through October. The Wednesday market is open 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. April through October, and the winter market operates November to March, with the market open twice a month beginning next season.

During commissioner comments, McCulloh wanted to follow up on outgoing Mayor Loren Pepperd’s request for Manhattan citizens to pray for the victims of the Boston bombing. She said in 1993, Manhattan flooded and the city of Boston learned that Manhattan was originally named New Boston. As a result, Boston sent a semi-truck full of food and necessities to Manhattan as a “gift.” She said with the bombing in Boston, the citizens of Manhattan should “reciprocate” that gift by sending something to help comfort the victims in Boston.

New Mayor John Matta said he would not read the consent agenda at the meeting because it was available online and printed on the agenda available to those who attend the meetings. He said arrangements would be made for those who needed assistance, but otherwise the consent agenda would be discussed and voted on without being read. The new commission passed the consent agenda unanimously.

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