Saturday Market opens SaturdayPublished 4:52pm Wednesday, April 16, 2014
With temperatures beginning to rise and summer on the way, Washington’s Saturday Market opens its season at 8 a.m. Saturday. The market, in its ninth year, remains open through Oct. 11.
The market features local growers of fresh fruit, vegetables, plants and flowers, while local anglers offer fresh seafood from area waters. Fresh baked goods, handmade pastas and roasted peanuts are in the offerings, as well.
Other features at Saturday Market include local artists that specialize in crafts, from jewelry to artwork and pottery.
“It (Saturday Market) has gone through a lot of transitions, and in the current format we have it in now, the vendors and consumers have grown,” said Beth Byrd, executive director of the Washington Harbor District Alliance. “We are hoping to do more transitions in the future.”
Byrd recently applied for a grant that would give her recourse to hire a market manager. If the grant comes through, it will enable the market to offer SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits to the people of Beaufort County.
The grant also opens the door for Saturday Market to do more promotions, like cooking demonstrations and healthy eating seminars. According to Byrd, organizers would like to celebrate whichever crop is in season.
“I want to grow the network of supporters of Saturday Market by getting the FSA (Farm Service Agency) and the new Agribusiness school at Beaufort County Community College involved,” Byrd said.
Saturday Market helps to promote the area’s small businesses and gives them a chance to start. Byrd said the market is very important economically and socially to the community.
“Anyone who goes down to the market can see a nice morning-type event, where you can go down and grab a cup of coffee and see what people have displayed,” Byrd explained. “There are a lot of conversations going on and it’s just a very pleasant experience.”
The Washington-Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce recognized Saturday Market a few years ago for its social and economic impact on the community.
The Washington Harbor District Alliance is a volunteer-driven organization promoting economic growth and events for downtown Washington.