FARMINGTON — Another summertime tradition in San Juan County returns this week as the weekly Makers Market enters its fourth year.
The event, which takes place every Thursday at Orchard Plaza until September 29, runs from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on June 2. The market offers locally grown produce, locally produced foods such as jams, jellies and pastries; handicrafts; Clothes; leather goods and other items.
Flo Trujillo, president of the Northwest New Mexico Arts Council, the organization hosting the market, said last year’s market never drew fewer than 20 vendors a week and can accommodate more. up to 30.
“One of the things I would like to do is energize young entrepreneurs and people from nonprofit organizations and make them feel welcome to join us,” she said.
Trujillo noted that many young people have picked up a habit like knitting, sewing, or creating some kind of art during the COVID-19 pandemic, and she said participating in the market is the perfect way for them to get their feet wet as traders.
“It’s an opportunity for them to take it out and see if there’s a business in there for them,” she said.
At least two young people have already taken the hint, she said, noting that two of those teenagers have already planned to sell their wares when the market opens.
Trujillo wishes nothing more for the market to have as many vendors as he lacks space in his house in Orchard Plaza. If that happens, she says, she already plans to set up additional vendors on the sidewalks in front of Main Street businesses.
“There is room,” she said. “But we want them to register with us first.”
Marketplace vendors must register online at https://nwnmac.org or in person at the marketplace. The fee is $8 per day, but sellers can purchase a five-week listing for just $25 and use all five weekly listings at any time. Vendors are encouraged to bring their own table, chairs, and awning, and those selling agricultural and edible products must have a food license.
Live music will be featured at the market on the first Thursday of each month, along with representatives from the Harvest Food Hub, who will bring their mobile kitchen unit.
On July 14, the market will once again host a handful of local chefs, who will compete for top honors at the Northwest New Mexico Local Food Summit cooking competition. The event features three local chefs preparing a creative meal from the same basic ingredients, plus two other local ingredients they are allowed to purchase from market vendors.
Trujillo was pleased with the number and variety of vendors who attended the market last year, and she hopes for even greater diversity this year.
“You never know who’s going to show up, so it’s not the same every week,” she said. “So hopefully people will come down and give it a chance.”
Mike Easterling can be reached at 505-564-4610 or [email protected] Support local journalism with a digital subscription: http://bit.ly/2I6TU0e.