The Great Falls Farmer's Market has wrapped up its 2022 season. After numerous vendors and attendees flocking to Whittier Park throughout the Summer season, Great Falls Farmer's Market Manager Michele Wynn said she is pleased with this year's turnout.
Wynn said, "This was an extremely successful year this year. We had probably about 270 vendors that applied this year, and on average we've had between 100-110 vendors every Saturday, so it's been a huge success again this year."
The origin of the Great Falls Original Farmers' Market dates back to the 1970’s when Hutterite colonies sold their produce door-to-door. In the late 70’s, a handful of Colonies and local farmers began setting up by the Civic Center and thus began the unofficial Great Falls Farmers' Market. It wasn't until 1982, when bylaws were adopted, that it became a non-profit trade association known as the Great Falls Original Farmers' Market.
The Market originally started in Margaret Park on the north side of the Civic Center and soon expanded into Whittier Park on the south side of the Civic Center.
Wynn has been the Market Manager for the past seven years. She said from what she's seen over the years, the market is becoming increasingly popular.
"I think part of that is due to the fantastic quality of vendors that we have. The word has gotten out that we've changed our hours from 8:30-1, so people are coming out later, and it's shown to be very successful."
Not only does Wynn consider this year to be successful, she says she has high hopes for the 2023 season.
"I think it's going to be more busy," Wynn said. "I think as word gets out about the fantastic food that we have, the wonderful vendors and quality of talent that we have, I think it's going to continue to get busier. People enjoy coming just to hang out, so I definitely expect it to be busier."
The Great Falls Farmers Market was voted best community event for 2022. This is the second year in a row the Farmer's Market was awarded.
Employees of the Farmers Market talked about this year's success.
Tyler Nygard said, "It was definitely a big success. Every year goes by pretty smoothly. There's always some hiccups, but we always find a way to hash it out. It always goes smoothly when you have a great team running it."
Tag Rittel added, "I think the Farmer's Market went really well. I saw a lot of people coming by with bags in their hands which is always really exciting."
According to the Farmers' Market website: "The Great Falls Original Farmers' Market is a non-profit organization based in Great Falls, Montana. With the mission, "Growing Commerce through Community", the market is managed through a board of advisors and community input. The market begins every season in early June and runs through September, filling the streets of Downtown Great Falls every Saturday from 8:30am-1:00pm."
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