Alton Farmers' and Artisans' Market Off To 'Exciting Start'
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ALTON - The Alton Farmers' & Artisans' Market kicked off with an outstanding start on Saturday in the Downtown Alton Historic District. The market is organized by Alton Main Street.
Alton Main Street Executive Director Sara McGibany said she couldn't have been more pleased with the start this past Saturday. The market runs from 8 a.m. to noon every Saturday through October 15, 2022.
"It is super exciting to have the Farmers' and Artisans' Market underway again," she said. "We are all now almost like family and we miss each other when it is in the off-season. There were a lot of hugs today. The community has really embraced this event year after year and new vendors and crowds of people just keep coming along with the returning vendors."
Live entertainment, artist demonstrations, and other special activities have been scheduled every week, McGibany said.
Shoppers will find a wide selection of locally-grown seasonal fruit and vegetables including heirloom varieties and organically grown crops, along with grass-fed beef, pasture-raised poultry, farm-fresh eggs, local honey, hot and iced coffee, fresh bread, and other baked goods. In addition, fresh-cut flowers, potted plants, and a large assortment of hand-crafted artwork such as pottery, stained glass, soap, candles, and woodworking items will be sold.
Gary's and Vickie's Designs have been a fixture in business here for about 25 years and they said they said they "love having displays at the fair."
"The Farmer's Market is just fantastic," they said. "It was a beautiful day this Saturday and everyone seemed to have a good day. Many were looking for Mother's Day gifts."
Alton Yard Farms co-owner Diane Soliwon said she was equally excited as the others to be back at the Farmer's Market, this time the second year with her urban farm.
Alton Main Street has received a LinkUP Illinois grant to improve access to healthy food. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits are accepted by most vendors, and recipients can receive a dollar-for-dollar match of up to $25 every time they swipe. Simply visit the information booth to use your card and double your buying power for fresh fruits and vegetables.
At the Markets, any products that are handmade by the vendor or homegrown within a 50-mile radius are welcome to be sold. New vendors are welcome; registration fees are $12 per week, and discounted seasonal rates are also available.
Anyone interested in becoming a vendor is encouraged to visit the Events page of www.DowntownAlton.com for full details and to register.
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