With perfect summer weather, the 2018 New Britain Farmer’s Market opened it’s third season to a good crowd at Central Park on Wednesday.
About 10 food and non-profit vendors, a band and several food trucks were scattered around the park. Benches with umbrellas allowed patrons to enjoy their snacks while listening to music.
“This is our second year. It is only 3 ½ miles from our farm,” said Matt Mercier of Berger Farm on the Chamberlin Highway in Kensington. “We get out to the farmer’s market to let people know we are here. There is a good crowd. Last year there was a day athletes from Central Cinnecticut State University came. A lot of people also come on lunch breaks.”
Urth Farms of New Britain came with radishes, cucumbers, squash, fruit and more.
“We will be here every week until November,” said Owen Quadrano. “We sell a little bit of everything. We are doing well. I am so excited”
Those in attendance stopped at various booths to purchase goods and get information.
“I think it is wonderful. It is a great event for people to come and see what is in New Britain,” said city resident Melody Rivera.
“It is really nice for the local farmers to come and to make people aware of the programs we have in New Britain,” said Crystal Rivera. “It puts a light on the local businesses.”
Members of the New Britain Senior Center were selling plants and herbs grown at the Arnold Schwartz Greenhouse. They offered oregano, cilantro, basil and sage.
Barbara Morse of the New Britain Public Library was in a booth handing out literature about programs happening at the library.
“We have a monthly newsletter with all our programs. All programs are free and all ages are welcome,” said Morse. “We have adult, children and teen programs.”
Next week at the library is a bat program and coming in August is a rock painting event.
Futures Inc. of Middletown brought a variety of desserts made by disabled residents.
“We provide services for adults with disabilities. We have a small bakery,” said Wayne Stocking who manned the booth with Brett Moore. “People bake things, learn life skills and socialization.”
It was the group’s first time at the event and Stocking said the group hopes to be there each week.
For entertainment, “Memphis Soul Spectacular” performed a variety of music to the enthusiastic crowd.
“We enjoy playing here. It is our third year,” said John Smayda. “We were one of the first bands to play here.”
Steve Amato, owner of Amato’s Toys and Hobby on Main St., said events like this are good for business.
“The more people downtown, the better,” said Amato. “I come out to support it. I bought groceries and got something to eat.”
“The amazing thing is, there is not just this. There is an open mic every Thursday at KC’s down the street. There is curbside dining,” said Gerry Amodio, executive director of the downtown district. “It is all these little parts that accentuate iconic stores like Amato’s. We have been waiting for this to happen and here it is.”
The Farmer’s Market will be held on Wednesdays from 11a.m. -2 p.m. at Central Park through October. This weekly event features a number of local farmers, craft vendors, local non-profit groups, entertainment and food trucks.
Farmers include Urth Farms/ROOTS, Dondero Orchards, Beckett Farms and Berger Farm.