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Farmers market takes root in Hancock

May 15, 2008|By MARLO BARNHART

HANCOCK - Town Manager David Smith long has been attracted to the idea of a farmers market.

Now, there's going to be one.

A kickoff farmers market will be held Saturday, May 31, from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Joseph Hancock Park on Main Street. From then on, into the fall, the farmers market will be held the second and fourth Saturday of each month, Smith said.

"This was one of the original ideas for that park," Smith said. "Wide sidewalks were installed at the park for vendors, who can set up there or in the grass."

All items must be homegrown or produced by the person who sets up the wares. No flea market items will be allowed.

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In addition to fruits and vegetables, Smith said the farmers market will feature handmade crafts, health and beauty products from animals raised by vendors, flowers from home gardens, local meats, farm eggs, wreaths and other items made from homemade craft items.

All vendors must agree to on-site checks if needed, Smith said, noting the town has adopted the basics of the state regulations governing farmers markets.

Vendors must bring their own tables.

"There is no cost to set up and no commission to the town," Smith said.

The Town of Hancock will have trash and recycling receptacles available and will haul both away, Smith said.

"We have insurance through the town for the location," Smith said. Individuals can purchase their own insurance if they would like from the Maryland Department of Agriculture.

Nonprofits will sell food on market days, with the money going to their groups.

Smith is hoping that a pavilion being constructed on the site will be finished by May 31. The 24-foot-by-44-foot building is being financed through Program Open Space, he said.

Copies of the operating rules for the farmers market will be available at Hancock Town Hall at 126 W. High St.

For information, call Smith at 301-331-7099.

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