On a cold, gray day, it's all smiles as Crestline Farmers Market opens its season
sg飞艇appCRESTLINE - Skies were gray, temperatures were in the 50s and face masks, hand sanitizer and other signs of the coronavirus pandemic were in abundance as the Crestline Farmers Market opened its season on Tuesday.
But even with the masks, it was clear pretty much everyone was smiling.
"It's going real well," vendor Becky Witter said. "It's chilly, but people are coming to the market, and we're grateful."
Witter, who sells garden plants with her husband, Johnsg飞艇app, was particularly glad to hear the market would be opening on schedule, as businesses reopen amid continuing efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19.
sg飞艇app"Things were planted in February, so this was before anything started," she said, gesturing to her plants. "So that's why I was really grateful that we went ahead and were able to keep having the markets."
The market is open 3 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays at 202 N. Thoman St., in a lawn next to the Crestline United Methodist Church.
sg飞艇appBefore the market opened, market director Becky McKean outlined efforts to make sure the event was safe for both vendors and shoppers.
"There will be a hand-sanitizing station; there will be reminders of social distancing," she said. "The vendors will be at least six to eight feet or more apart. We don't have as many vendors as we usually do in May because the crafters aren't coming; I'm not encouraging them at all. ...
"The only disadvantage of this is some of our older folk that may be having trouble with walking and that kind of stuff, in that things will be spread apart more than they would have been in previous years."
McKean said she had a difficult time finding hand sanitizer for the market.
sg飞艇app"I want to do a shout-out to Iron Vault Distillery in Galion, that's where I found some," she said. "And they will make sure I have some every week."
Though the market is not allowing any crafters for now, people selling consumables also may offer crafted items.
"If people want to wear masks, they're more than welcome to, but it is not mandatory," McKean said. "Gloves are not mandatory, either."
sg飞艇appFor now, the focus of the market will be essential items — food and that type of thing, she said. Food items must be packaged at the vendor's home. Vendors are required to use new bags; they can't recycle plastic bags from grocery stores.
Garden plants, such as those offered by the Witters and Green Patch Organics, are popular items early in the season, McKean said.
sg飞艇appMcKean said she planned to speak to vendors about the possibility of allowing people to pre-order items for upcoming markets. Information will be posted on the Crestline Farmers Market Facebook page.
"I think people, vendors I know, are appreciative of having this outlet, to be able to sell their items," she said, adding she was looking forward to seeing all of the friends she's made over the years.
sg飞艇app"It will be fun to see them all and see them face to face, rather than through a telephone or computer screen." she said.
sg飞艇appMarci Teynor of New Washington has been a regular at the market since it started.
She said she didn't have to change much in how she prepares her cookies, pies and other baked goods for sale. "I always did seal everything pretty well," she said, and she's careful while baking at home.
sg飞艇app"Just using hand sanitizer to open the bags and to make sure that I'm not cross-contaminating things, and wearing a mask," Teynor said. "So I'm doing the best I can."
sg飞艇appLike the others, she was happy when she learned the market would be opening.
sg飞艇app"Yes, I was, because I love the people here," Teynor said. "It's so good, and they're good to you. and I really like it here."