Downtown Derry’s summer farmers’ market is getting a makeover. At this time last year, Derry was without a farmers’ market. However, a group of dedicated volunteers has been working behind the scenes to establish the new, community run Derry Homegrown Farm & Artisan Market.
Neil Wetherbee, Vice President of the Board of Directors of the newly formed, not for profit organization, said last week that “The former event was created in the interest of economic development, but this new effort has an even larger vision. It’s a great way to promote the benefits of buying local foods, buying from local businesses, and to promote a healthier way of eating.”
Wetherbee also noted how pleased he is to be part of a group effort that allows people in the community to come together, work hard, and get this project off the ground. He believes that with many people sharing the workload, this new endeavor will be more sustainable and long-lasting.
According to the mission statement of the Derry Homegrown group, they want to provide local farmers and growers, artisanal bakers, gourmets, and craftspeople with a long-term, sustainable marketplace for Derry and its surrounding communities. We intend to create a vibrant marketplace where the community can purchase locally grown produce, locally raised meats, eggs and poultry, organic and grass fed dairy options, and the highest quality prepared foods and baked goods, along with quality handcrafted items from local artisans. We will also strive to educate the community on the many benefits of eating and buying locally.
Opening day is set for Wednesday, June 7, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the lawn at 1 West Broadway. It is located next to the Manning Street Pocket Park.
Visitors are encouraged to use street parking on both East and West Broadway if available, or to park at one of the the free municipal lots, located behind the Derry Municipal Center on Manning Street or the lot across the street at the end of Abbot Court. Walking or biking from the rail trail, which runs right through the Manning Street park, would also be a fun way to get there.
Derry Homegrown‚ vendor list is growing. A partial list of the local vendors that have signed up is as follows: Baucis & Philemon Farm’s Organic Produce and Poultry of Derry, Nomad Bakery’s Artisan Breads of Derry, Victory Aquaponics Greenhouse of Londonderry, Slippery Soap of Salem, The Healthy Porcupine’s Soaps and Balms of Concord, Debbie D’s Homemade Jams of Epping, and Fresh Start Farms of Manchester, which is a multi-farmer collective of participants (and recent graduates) of the Organization for Refugee & Immigrant Success in Manchester.
There will be activities for children as well, including the acoustic musical duo, Song of the Lark. Other local musicians will be performing each week. Artist spotlights will also take place each week and will start with Susan E. Hanna of Londonderry.
An up-to-date calendar of performers and events will be posted on www.derryhomegrown.org.
You can also find them on Facebook at facebook.com/derryhomegrown.
For space availability and artistic and musical entertainment opportunities, contact Derry Homegrown at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-548-3935.