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Chamber will manage Farmer’s Market

By MELINDA WILLIAMS
melinda@southwesttimes.com

Come spring, Pulaski Farmer’s Market will be under new management and have a new home.

Pulaski Town Council unanimously voted Tuesday night to enter into a two-year contract with Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce for management of the market, which has operated at Maple Shade Plaza for the past three years.

Under the new contract, the market will return to Pulaski Train Station and new fee scale and participation guidelines will be established for vendors, said Peggy White, executive director of the chamber. She said the chamber’s executive board already has approved the proposal.

The chamber had proposed charging the town $5,000 per year to manage the market, but the Chamber’s president-elect, Robert Hiss, agreed Tuesday night to accept $4,000 the first year and $5,000 the second year.

Funding will come from $5,000 set aside in the town budget for Greater Pulaski Alliance, which has managed the farmer’s and flea markets for years.

Councilman Joseph Goodman suggested the reduction in fee so that GPA could retain $1,000 in “seed” money for reorganization. The intent is for GPA to reorganize and grow so that it can manage the market again in the future.

White said the farmer’s market will be operated from April 1 to Oct. 31 each year. It is currently open May 3 through Oct. 4.

Since a contract has to be executed and there are only a few weeks left on this year’s schedule, White said the changes will most likely take place next spring.

Goodman and some other members of town council started questioning management of the market after some vendors apparently expressed concern that the market would die due to declining participation.

Councilman Greg East made the motion to turn management of the market over to the Chamber and use $4,000 of the GPA funds to cover the first year of management. Councilman Jamie Radcliffe seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

Comments

comments

4 Responses to Chamber will manage Farmer’s Market

  1. Andrew Cocke

    September 10, 2012 at 9:33 am

    This is truley good news! I greatly miss the days when the farmers market was operated at the train station. It just seemed to have a better atmosphere over there, and I must admit, I had lost interest in the farmers market when it went over to the shopping center.

    Thank you Pulaski County Chamber, and the Town of Pulaski for working together to make this a reality.

  2. Geneva Lockhart

    September 13, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    When I read this article, I was surprised a fee had to be paid to have a “Farmer’s Market”. Why can’t it be free to vendors wanting to sell their produce/products? I also liked the Train Station better, and, since, the Town spent so much money on the renovation, I really don’t see many things taking place for the community. If vendors clean up after the flea market is over, why charge anyone?

    Geneva

  3. david

    September 26, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    well lets give them the opportunity to screw this up!

  4. Mike

    October 11, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    The GPA is an independent non-profit that has operated the market for several years. By what authority can the town take the market away from them?

    Looks like the new council members are trying to bully the GPA.

    Can the town decide to take the gas sales from a local gas station or that a store cannot sell shoes any more?

    If the town wants to start another farmer’s market it can but in no way can they take the market from an independent organization. I would think that other merchants in the town would be up in arms, protesting this action.

    Also why is the chamber getting into this mess? In my opinion the chamber has lost all credibility! The chamber is supposed to be promoting local business not being in competition with them.

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