Libraries and Farmers Markets Work Together to Bring You Fresh Food
Find your next great read and tonight’s dinner at the library.
What may seem like an unlikely alliance between public libraries and farmers markets isn’t an entirely foreign concept. For the past few years, some of these community market events have partnered with local libraries to strengthen the impact that independent farmers and artisans have on their neighborhoods. These collaborative events aim to make it easier to present local families with access to fresh food and resources that shoppers can use to start their own DIY gardening or other beneficial projects.
Notable Past Collaborations
An article published in October 2016 discussed the combined efforts of the Farmers Market Federation of New York and the Mid York Library System. In addition to presenting New Yorkers with access to fresh, locally grown food, the collaboration also produced a program called Farm Market Kids. This program combined library activities like story times with farming-related activities to get children more interested in sustainable food production.
In another article, the Boyle County Farmers Market in Kentucky partnered with local libraries to host market events, a partnership that aimed to make libraries a reliable resource for residents of Boyle County.
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Libraries and farmers markets working together have not faded from practice. In fact, Baton Rouge’s Red Stick Farmers Market currently takes place at the city’s main library every Tuesday evening.
Petersburg Public Library in Virginia also promotes a Senior Farmers Market event that caters to citizens over sixty with limited income. The market provides free fresh food for these individuals, courtesy of local farmers.
The Bayside Area Library hosts a Flip Flop Farmer event on Thursdays. This collaboration was made possible by the Virginia Beach Public Library and the Virginia Beach Agriculture Department to make locally grown, fresh food more accessible to the surrounding community.
Finally, the Sugar Grove Public Library in Illinois hosts Wintermarket, an indoor farmers market that occurs on the second Saturday of the month during wintertime (from October to April).
Hopefully, the trend will continue to grow, and more communities will be able to take advantage of the many benefits that come from collaborative efforts between local farmers and public libraries.
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