Amanda McLenon 0

Bring back Charleston Farmers Market in Marion Square

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Charleston Farmers Market is a vibrant, joyful, family-friendly community gathering in Marion Square that normally happens every Saturday morning, April through November. Beloved by locals and tourists alike, this award-winning market serves the community by providing fresh local produce and food as well as local handcrafted artisan items. More than 80 entrepreneurs depend on this market for their livelihoods. Due to COVID-19, the venue did not open as scheduled in April, and for most vendors, it is still not open.

Currently, the "Charleston Farmers Market" operates as an "essentials only" market with a couple large farm tents in the parking lot of the Joe Riley Stadium, with more signs about distancing than customers. We all agree following CDC recommendations to keep vendors and customers safe is of the utmost importance- however INDOOR venues such as bars and restaurants and retail stores are open in our city. In addition, all of the other farmers markets in the Charleston area are open with a variety of vendors (Mount Pleasant, Sea Islands, Sunday Brunch, etc.). Most importantly the City Market is open with customers allowed inside some of the buildings.

Why has the Charleston Farmers Market been left out of the staged re-opening of Charleston?

If we can return to Marion Square, we will have 10 ACRES to spread out and allow everyone to safely shop. If you have attended you know there are juried artists including jewelers, painters,potters and basket weavers; artisans selling salt, cheese, olive oil, and soap; food vendors serving delicious breakfast, and local musicians lifting our spirits. And of course, local farmers providing the sustenance of fresh produce.

The holidays are approaching and this is a vital season for the vendors. This is not just about saving these small businesses, this is about supporting local families who have made this event happen for the past 30 years. We are asking the City of Charleston to INCLUDE ALL VENDORS and to bring CFM back to Marion Square, on Saturday mornings, where it belongs. Keeping our market closed while INDOOR venues are open is not going to curb the spread of the virus, if anything they should be closed and we should be open, safely distanced outside and lifting up the local economy as this market was designed to!

Please SHARE this petition and tag anyone who you think will support this issue #bringbackcharlestonfarmersmarket #bringbackCFM.

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