Letters to the Editor

Farmers Market needs a reliable, permanent home

The Poulsbo Farmers Market is an incredible success story. This long-season market has frequently been recognized locally and statewide for its contribution to the community and for the benchmarks it sets as an organization.

The market provides an opportunity for local farmers and vendors to showcase their products and grow their businesses; and for customers to buy fresh produce and prepared food, to support the local economy, and to enjoy the festive atmosphere created by the market each Saturday morning.

The market has benefitted from consistent growth since its inception 10 years ago, and has helped to launch several small businesses in the community, including Crimson Cove, Viking Feast ice cream and Borrowed Kitchen Bakery.

The benefits provided by the market, however, are significantly hampered by our region’s frequent inclement weather. Despite the insistence for growth from farmers and vendors, and support of the community, the market’s current location and its lack of facilities inhibits reliable planning or further season extension. We are calling on the community to please join us in search of a reliable, permanent home for the market, protected from wind and rain. The end result could have an enormous impact, not only for the market, but for the City and Port of Poulsbo, and for the greater North Kitsap region.

This dream could take many forms. It could be a Viking Avenue, multi-use indoor recreation facility, owned by the city or port and managed by Parks and Rec. Or it could be a grand, multi-use, steel-and-glass structure with large overhead doors similar to those found in Bellingham, Port Angeles and Olympia. Bellingham’s “Depot Market Square” is a prime example of a public-private partnership that invigorates the community and fosters local business.

Some viable location options include the Viking Avenue corridor, the old City Hall site on Jensen Way or the city maintenance yard across from the public library, behind Coffee Oasis. If the city relocated the yard to an upgraded site on North Viking Avenue (which is already city-owned), then this site across from the library would become available as a perfect community gathering place. With improvements to parking and repurposed existing infrastructure, the site could accommodate an indoor-outdoor, year-round, multi-day market just a block from our current site.

The Poulsbo Farmers Market has recently expressed its needs to both the city and Port of Poulsbo. While both groups responded with kind words and enthusiasm, the project longs for that critical mass of community support in order to succeed. Please contact your Poulsbo city, port and Parks and Rec representatives to share our vision for an eye-catching, all-season community venue, and to usher the Poulsbo Farmers Market into a new, permanent home.

Thanks for your support! Visit us at www.PoulsboFarmersMarket.org.

Brian Simmons
Board and staff of the Poulsbo Farmers Market



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