USU Botanical Center Farmers Market continues to grow

Jul 14 2012 - 10:02pm

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KAYSVILLE -- The Utah State University Botanical Center's Farmers Market continues to grow both vendors and buyers.

This year, USU Aggie ice cream is being added to the mix.

For the next 13 Thursdays, a farmers market will be held at the USU Botanical Center, 875 S. 50 West.

The sixth annual "Meet Me at the Market" will be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. every Thursday through Oct. 11 at the center, said Shawn Olsen, USU Extension Service Agent for Davis County.

The first night of the market was Thursday.

"It's grown every year by a little bit," Olsen said of the event. "We're not sure what the ultimate potential is. As it grows, I would think there would be more local farmers participate."

Kaysville resident Jan Sheets, a produce vendor at the market since it was established, said the event appears to be drawing more people and more sophisticated vendors.

"It pales in comparison to what Ogden and Salt Lake City do, but it is quite popular here," said Sheets, who sells the fruits, vegetables and nuts she produces on her 11/2-acre lot.

The market was established six years ago to encourage people to come to the 150-acre botanical center, help support local growers and share produce from the USU Kaysville farm, Olsen said.

Before the market opened, most of the farm's produce was taken to Logan to be sold, he said.

When the center opened in 1995, there were no signs showing how to access the property, Olsen said. Fees collected from vendors have been used to address that problem.

But even without the signage they desire, Olsen said, the market will draw thousands of vendors before it closes for the season.

"We get between 500 to 700 people each Thursday. Over the course of the market we'll get 6,000 to 7,000 people," Olsen said.

This year's market will also include entertainment, children's activities and ice cream.

"New this year, because it is so warm," Olsen said, "we will be selling USU Aggie ice cream."

Food vendors will sell hot dogs, barbecue and Navajo tacos, he said.

The market offers a family picnic atmosphere, Olsen said, with several large canopies and tables set up to provide a dining area.

Those interested in being a vendor at the market can call 801-451-3412.

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