Local as usual, and safe in new ways. Many farmers markets will be operating this summer, but it’s not business as usual! Vendors and market staff are required to follow state guidance to ensure the safest environment for shoppers and vendors alike. (See here for Vermont guidance and New Hampshire Emergency Order details). Please be patient with vendors and market staff. They are doing their best to comply with the guidance and still be able to offer local products to their communities. As the public health situation evolves over the season the rules markets must follow may change. Please be flexible as markets work to adapt.
Find an up-to-date list of open farmers markets at the Vital Communities Online Guide, and follow our Facebook and Instagram feeds for updates. Here is what you can expect at markets this season:
Everyone will be happy to see you! Despite all the changes and new rules, markets will still be the place to see smiling eyes, from a safe distance, and get fresh local products.
SNAP/EBT will still be accepted! Other forms of market currency will vary market to market.
There will be a way to pre-order products in advance, and pick them up at the market site. Check the market website/social media to learn how to order in advance. In some cases there will be a list of vendor contacts, in others an online ordering system.
Bring a face mask, and wash your hands when you get there. Vendors and market staff are required to wear protective equipment. You can help by bringing your own mask to wear while you shop. Markets will have hand washing stations or sanitizer available at the market entrance.
Vendor booths will not be self-serve. Only vendors are allowed to handle their products. You will verbally tell the vendor your choices and they will place it in a bag for you.
Most produce will be pre-bagged to limit the number of people who have handled your food. Vendors may also be packaging products and pricing them in such a way that they do not have to make change.
Prepared food, beverages, and yummy things will be sold, and may be made at the market, but will be packaged and must be consumed off-site. This includes coffee, ice cream, kettle corn, etc.
Markets will not have entertainment, activities, music, or other things that might tempt people to linger and congregate. However, keep an eye out on social media for fun kids activities and other socially distant ways to connect with your market, as many markets are planning this type of activity.
Send one person to shop whenever possible. Please leave children and pets at home if you are able to. This will help ensure social distancing and allow vendors to serve more customers.
The layout of the market will be different. Each market has worked hard to arrange a new layout that ensures safe distance between booths and between vendors and shoppers. There will be one entrance, one exit, traffic will flow one-way through the market.
Stay home if you are unwell or may have been exposed to the virus. We must protect each other during these challenging times. Send someone to the market in your place.
Thank you to Molly Drummond for the beautiful photos.