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Windsor establishes its own farmers market

WINDSOR

Western Tidewater residents have yet another opportunity to shop for fresh produce and other seasonal favorites. Since June 12, a farmers market has been set up in Windsor, specifically on the parking lot of the Old Point National Bank, 11407 Windsor Blvd. This open air opportunity is open from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. rain or shine — unless the weather becomes dangerous — and will be available through the end of September.

The project is the result of planning and work by its chief organizer, Mischelle Goodman, proprietor of co-sponsor Anytime Fitness in Windsor. Her planning got started at the beginning of the year because, she said, “A lot of people expressed interest in it. I contacted Old Point National Bank, which [until recently] also hosted a market at its Carrollton Branch. Then I met with the people who handle Smithfield’s market. They were very, very helpful. Sharing their successes and things they’ve struggled with. It’s a process.”

Also partnered in this venture is the Isle of Wight Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3), which she describes as the “charitable arm of the Chamber of Commerce.” The foundation presents scholarships and sends students to the Model General Assembly each year. Education is major pillar, but health and community issues are also concerns. Fundraisers are generated as needed.

There were three vendors the first week and six last Friday at the Windsor site. As of this past Monday, the following are signed up:

Mickey and Ann’s Farmette – produce and meat; Pair-A-Dice Acres – local produce; Southside Virginia Catering – jams, pickles and prepared meals; Shamblin Flowers – fresh cut local seasonal bouquets; Damsel in Defense – stun guns, pepper spray.

“It just keeps growing. There’s plenty of room for more vendors if anyone’s interested,” Goodman said, and added her gratitude to Old Point National Bank for allowing the use of its parking lot. More sponsorship and vendors are, of course, welcome. To do either, email WindsorVAFarmersMarket@gmail.com. Good news: Vendor application fees have been waived this year as a way to encourage involvement and promote the farmer’s market in Windsor for the future.

Friday afternoon was chosen as a way to increase opportunities for vendors to participate, she said, because many are obligated at other markets on the weekend. Also, customers who leave work and catch sight of the activity can drop by to get fresh items for dinner that night or later.

Safety precautions have, of course, been put in place.

“We’ve spread our vendors out. The vendors themselves are encouraged to wear masks, but attendees are not required,” said Goodman. “People kind of know the drill.”