11April showers and pollen aren’t the only things Spring is bringing to the Fayetteville community; on April 6, the City Market at the Museum will be hosting its annual Spring Kickoff. The Fayetteville History Museum hosts this local farmers, crafters, and makers market every Saturday, rain or shine. From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Museum’s front lawn hosts a broad array of local growers and artisans who peddle their wares to visitors.
The Fayetteville History Museum’s City Market at the Museum has been a Saturday staple downtown since 2010 and is a warm and welcoming community of small businesses. The program began with former Museum Director Bruce Daws. Daws felt that the history museum and the farmers market were a natural fit. Historically, farmers markets have played an essential role in the Fayetteville community. Open-air markets served as significant economic and social institutions within our community.
Farmers markets have a unique and positive impact on their communities. These markets allow small businesses and small farms to establish themselves. Local markets also use fewer resources to bring products to the market, supporting a more economic and ecological way to produce and sell products. Market goods are often more sustainable. Farmers markets also help to increase access to fresh and nutritious food and allow consumers to build relationships with the businesses and farmers who produce the goods they are purchasing.
“My favorite thing about the market is the sense of community it creates,” explained Britney Mankin, historical properties specialist and market coordinator.
Each Spring, the City Market at the Museum hosts a kickoff event, and various organizations from around the community participate. This year, Fayetteville PWC will be in attendance, and Fayetteville/Cumberland Parks and Recreation’s Clark Park Nature Center and Lake Rim and the Master Gardeners will have tables set up. These organizations will have fun activities ready for all who visit their tables. The market is regularly the home to farmers selling vegetables and meat, bakers, crafters, food trucks and makers. For this event, vendors will contribute to gift baskets as part of a giveaway for attendees on the day of the event, and a small selection of carnival games will be set up for all to enjoy.
In addition to the Spring Kickoff, the City Market at the Museum hosts various special events throughout the year. The market regularly participates in the weekend-long Midsummer Magic event in July hosted by the Downtown Alliance. It hosts a dog-friendly day in August for the Dog Days of Summer.
The market is home to some tried-and-true regular vendors, such as Joyce and William Horne. They have been vendors at the market since it began and sell a selection of produce, jams, and jellies. This summer, there will be a host of newcomers to explore.
“This program brings energy and life to the museum grounds in the heart of downtown Fayetteville,” said Heidi Bleazey, museum director and historic and natural resources manager for Fayetteville/Cumberland Parks and Recreation.
The market always welcomes new vendors who make or grow their products. Those interested in becoming a vendor with the City Market at the Museum can stop by the Museum to collect and apply during business hours, Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Vendor spaces are approved at the discretion of the museum staff, and participation is free. For additional information, please call 910-433-1457.

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