[Market-farming] increasing mid-week market sales

SHEILA PAYNE srp75 at msn.com
Tue Nov 28 22:32:52 EST 2006


Hi,

I'm on the board of the Boulder County Farmer's Market in Colorado.    Here's some of the things we've done at the market in Boulder (we have another Saturday only market in the town of Longmont).

  a.. Changed the hours from the morning to after work -- 4 to 8 p.m. (late in the year when it is getting dark earlier many of our growers put Christmas lights on their tents -- it looks so festive).  
  b.. Our Saturday market was at capacity (space is limited) and so new growers can sell at the Wednesday market or in Longmont. 
  c.. We have prepared food vendors -- people shop and have supper.  
  d.. Live music -- a local artist, and occasional special events like a  kids tent. 
  e.. Beer and wine tent -- Colorado micro-brews and wine.  We rotate through the producers so they all get a chance in the spotlight. 
  f.. Give away $1 coupons at other weeknight events  
  g.. Advertise and send out an e-mail newsletter 
  h.. Got to critical mass -- the more growers, food vendors, and people on the street, the more customers. 
  i.. It's a destination -- next to a park,  downtown, restaurants -- people come to just hang out  
  j.. Here's our website  http://www.boulderfarmers.org/<http://www.boulderfarmers.org/>


----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Wiediger, Alison<mailto:alison.wiediger at hart.kyschools.us> 
  To: market farming<mailto:market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org> 
  Sent: Tuesday, November 28, 2006 10:21 AM
  Subject: [Market-farming] increasing mid-week market sales


  Good morning everyone!

   

  During the winter months (off-sales time for most - unless they have high tunnels!), our Farmers' Market Board meets several times to plan the coming season.  In the three seasons our producer-only market has been in existence, we have enjoyed great growth - beyond our dreams.  However, our mid-week (we are open Saturday and Tuesday mornings) sales just are not as good as we'd like.  Because of the lack of crowd, many of our farmers who come a long distance decide it's not worth the drive.  We know a lot of it has to do with work schedules, and even tried a late afternoon market - and that was even worse!  If anyone has a "tried and true" strategy for increasing customer traffic at a mid-week market, we'd love to hear it!  Keep in mind we don't have a market manager - the farmers basically run the market as volunteers and time in the summer is at a premium!

   

   Secondly, we are always looking for ways to recruit new vendors and would welcome ideas about recruitment.

   

  Finally, here's our market website - still under construction, but getting there!   http://www.skyfarmersmarket.com<http://www.skyfarmersmarket.com/>

   

  Thanks!!

    

   

  Alison Wiediger, Au Naturel Farm

   

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