Artesenal cheeses, fresh fruits and vegetables could be on your table this summer with the talk of possible farmers market for Kings Park.
At the Kings Park Civic Association meeting held last month, local resident Anne Marie Nedell presented a plan to highlight the benefits and possible kinks of having such a market in town.
“As you can imagine the prospect of having a farmers market in Kings Park is an exciting one,” said Nedell.
The market would be open from early summer into September or October and would be set up in the municipal lot of Route 25A across from the fire department. It would take up about one-quarter of the lot, which Nedell says is under utilitized. Currently there are markets set up in Hunitington, Northport and Port Jefferson. Nedell believes Kings Park fosters an environment for one. The market would bring such items as flowers, honey and fruit and run from June to until Thanksgiving.
Some concerns raised by residents who attended the meeting were trash left behind from vendors and also about local shops possibly losing business due to the competition set up by the market.
“The feedback has been great,” said civic president, Sean Lehmann. “The community really wants one. It would enhance business in the area, not compete with it,” he said.
In New York State, there are over 350 farmers markets, drawing crowds of shoppers each day, benefitting not only the farmers who sell their products and the consumers who wish to enjoy fresh fruit and vegetables, but also helping to give the local economy a much-needed shot in the arm.
“There are several successful farmers markets already in existence on Long Island and being Kings Park residents, we thought it would be a great idea to see if we could bring one to our local community this upcoming growing season,” said Nedell.
Nedell explains that in a farmers market, a group of farmers typically sell their products once a week at a designated public place like a park or parking lot. “It is a great way to meet local farmers and get fresh, flavorful produce,"she said.
Nedell is hoping that the introduction of a farmers market will add energy to the downtown local business district and that residents of other nearby communities will come to Kings Park for the farmers market, potentially leading them to visit and shop at other businesses in town.
“So far, we have been handing out surveys to the community to see if everyone shares our thoughts on starting a farmers market. The feedback we have received back has been extremely positive and supportive,” said Nedell.
“It is not just a business thing, but a community thing,” said Lehmann.