Visit Washington’s Saturday Market “just for the fun of it”

Published 8:36 pm Thursday, May 14, 2009

By Staff
When you venture north, you don’t want to miss the great, long-standing farmer’s markets. The Lancaster, Penn., Amish Market, Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Market, Baltimore’s Lexington Market and the Washington, D.C., Eastern Market draw visitors and locals in droves every day of operation.
Six years ago, Cam Padgett and other volunteers founded the Washington version of a farmer’s market, Saturday Market. 
Over the years, the location has shifted several times, but is now settled in a popular area on the west end of the Washington waterfront near the dock attendant’s office.
In the past two years, the core group of farmers and growers has increased to about 15 dedicated participants. Each week, 400 to 600 visitors stop by between 8 a.m. and noon on Saturdays from May through October.
The most satisfying thing about being involved with the management of the market is being able to hang around and watch how the vendors and customers enjoy themselves.  
Neighbors greet neighbors. Locals brag about our town to visitors. Vendors share recipes and cooking tips. Try to find that at a supermarket.
Every community-service nonprofit group across the country is faced with belt-tightening at best, and struggling to survive at worst. 
Organizations such as Downtown Washington on the Waterfront depend on active volunteers to direct the projects that help fulfill our mission of improving and enlivening downtown. We are blessed with a resilient collection of volunteers, but we can always use more.
With limited funds, it would seem to be an impossible task to get the word out about our projects. Here in Washington, we are fortunate to have a wide variety of resources to spread the word about our activities. 
Homeowners and businesses allow us to place signs on their properties. The city electric workers tend to the banners overhanging Main Street near Route 17 at no charge. The city Parks and Recreation Department make the lot available and maintain its appearance.
Above all, the support of the Washington Daily News helps ensure our projects are a success. News reports about the events, editorials about shopping locally and “About Town” all inform the community of our activities and boost local attendance.
As an added bonus, local artists and artisans join us every second Saturday through Oct. 10, and the Beaufort County Traditional Music group jams every Saturday at the intersection of Main and Gladden.
We look forward to greeting new customers and vendors as we strive to improve and continue to operate Washington’s Saturday Market.