The Statesboro Main Street Farmers Market will open for the 2023 season Saturday, its second at its new facility behind the Visit Statesboro welcome center on South Main St.
There are 52 vendors signed up for Saturday, including a Market-record 16 area farmers and lots of old “friends” customers have shopped at for years.
“Jacob’s Produce and Poor Robin’s Gardens have been favorites for fruits and vegetables for years,” said Becky Davis, who is president and CEO of the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau and president of the Farmers Market Board. “Also, WilMor Farms will be back with its cut flowers. Folks line up to get those and they sell out almost every week. And Southern Swiss Dairy is returning after a six-year-absence.”
The market will be open every Saturday – 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. – through the week before Thanksgiving in November and conclude with the traditional “Shopping by Lantern Light.”
Davis said the 52 vendors signed up for opening day are the most for a Saturday market since the first one was held in the downtown Synovus Bank parking lot in 2008. In comparison, 37 vendors were on hand for the first day last year.
While a large crowd is expected Saturday, Davis said Market manager Willow Farmer and her studied the flow of customers during the first indoor season in 2022 and noted any bottlenecks that caused delays or unnecessary lines at vendor booths.
“We have rearranged vendors to better handle traffic flow and make the customer experience more efficient,” Davis said.
Also, Davis said the information booth that was located near the double-door front entrance has been moved to the back, underneath the balcony area. She said Farmers Market T-shirts and tokens to purchase for certain vendors will be available there.
Another new customer feature of the Market is the boardwalk and foot bridge over Little Lotts Creek that was constructed over the past few months behind the facility.
“Connecting to the Willie McTell Trail is exactly what the market needed,” Davis said. “I know the downtown businesses are excited that people can park downtown and shop, then walk down the Trail using the bridge and boardwalk to get to the Farmers Market and then head back on the Trail to downtown.”
The Statesboro Farmers Market’s online service remains open year-round. Orders may be placed Friday until Tuesday night for pickup each Thursday. See statesboromarket2go.locallygrown.net for more information.